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The Way to Paradise by Mario Vargas Llosa
In The Way to Paradise, Mario Vargas Llosa uses fiction to tell the story of Paul Gaguin's life in the south Pacific juxtaposed against the story of his grandmother, Flora Tristan, a writer, socialist and feminist in Europe. Tristan forged an independent life trying to organize workers into unions and convince men to treat women as equals. Gaugin left behind a wife and family to venture to Tahiti in search of personal and artistic liberation. She was idealistic and utopian; he was loutish and self-absorbed. Both, however, strove to make their contribution to the world in their own fashion. The Way to Paradise has received mostly positive reviews. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says, "A study of personal ambition and the sacrifices that some people will make to achieve greatness and to make a difference in life, The Way to Paradise is a passionate and beautiful tale well told."
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