In The Jaguar and Other Stories, cruelty and betrayal are ultimately vanquished through bonds of friendship, family, love, and forgiveness.
Primarily set in Mexico from the late nineteenth century to the present, “The Jaguar,” a novella, tells the story of several generations of a prosperous family who, in addition to negotiating family betrayals, faces the social and economic challenges of the Mexican Revolution and Great Depression. Rosario, an indigenous healer, marries into the family and serves her community while carrying her own devastating secret.
In “Mama Miller,” a young mother befriends an elderly North Carolina farm woman and her son. Delighting in Mama and Wall Miller’s knowledge of growing and preparing food, Dory also becomes determined to understand the unspoken, yet obviously painful past events in their lives. While forging enduring bonds with the Millers, Dory also deepens her own family relationships and sense of purpose.
In “The Trip,” an isolated little boy and a stressed-out attorney reluctantly join a horse packing trip in the Idaho mountains, and as a result find their lives transformed in ways they could not have imagined. Love, talking trees, the beauty of the natural world, and an unlikely encounter form the roots of their opening to the richer possibilities of life.
“Truth Be Told,” the final piece in this collection, is both a mystery and a coming-of-age story. After teenage Francie’s abusive parents are killed in a car accident, she struggles to be heard in a community that is quick to pin a crime on her. Maintaining her integrity despite a lack of adult support, she depends instead on best friends who sustain her as they help to unravel the mystery of her situation.
Copyright © Roxanne K. Livingston. All Rights Reserved.