The First Book of the Pentagonia
Farewell to the Sea: A Novel of Cuba (Pentagonia)
By Reinaldo Arenas
Reinaldo Arenas’ Pentagonia (The Five Agonies) are books that I’ve actually read! A number of years ago. I’ve got these 5 paperbacks in my library, before the Kindle was created. It’s funny but I know that these books haven’t really been read by that many people. I’m hopeful that maybe they will be read someday. I’ve very pleased with myself for having read them. This is the first one.
I love each of the books in Pentagonia but this one especially stands out as a masterful work by a truly brilliant talent. Perfect as a stand alone read or as the center of the five novels, I cannot recommend this enough.
Having read them in their intended order, Farewell to the Sea seemed to anchor the five novels perfectly, fusing the stream of consciousness of Singing from the Well and Palace of the White Skunks and paving the way for the absurdity of The Color of Summer and the dystopian horror of The Assault. Farewell to the Sea places Arenas in the company of Faulkner and Virginia Woolf, but he still manages to forge a niche of his own that is remarkable, stunning and thoroughly rewarding. Read this book.
A book reader