Magical realism pulled me in my late 20s. Being a huge fan of Neil Gaiman’s writing, it wasn’t a big leap to those South American writers who developed the genre – Márquez, Borges, Rulfo, etc. The One Sky Day by Leone Ross is a welcome returned to a style that I’ve missed!
The book is based in Popisho, a fictional island with a very Caribbean feel. All it’s inhabitants are born with a cors, a special gift that can heal, or give strength, or in the case of Xavier, one of the island’s revered macaenus, allows him to cook a meal unique for each visitor to his restaurant.
Many themes in the book work, such as the shunned indigent population, Xavier’s craving for moth, Anise’s search for the truth, the ghost of Xavier’s wife; but some just seemed to be plopped in without any reference, such as when the women’s pum-pums fell out! Another curiosity was that Popisho appeared timeless, there’s no reference to technology, not until the beauty contest near the end where huge big screens projected the hosts – it seemed oddly out of place with the rest of the book.
Some gorgeous writing, particularly the capturing of the local dialect, makes this a very solid 4!