The Lizard's Tail. Luisa Valenzuela, Gregory Rabassa.
The Lizard's Tail
The Lizard's Tail

The Lizard's Tail. A Novel

New York: Farrar Straus Giroux, 1983. 1st US Edition. Octavo, publisher's mustard cloth over tan paper, spine stamped in mustard, original illustrated dust jacket.

An inscribed copy of Argentinian writer Luisa Valenzuela’s roman à clef based on right-wing politician López Rega–Isabel Perón’s Minister of Social Well-Being–who ruled Argentina literally through sorcery, earning him the national nickname “The Sorcerer.” Perón referred to López Rega as “Prophet Daniel” and would frequently use him more for emotional and spiritual guidance rather than as a minister, to such an extent that he was said to have had Rasputin-like authority over Perón during her presidency. Valenzuela is careful to never name López Rega outright, instead allowing him the authority of a first-person narrator in describing his desire to become lord of the world and his following authoritarian reign of terror. “I wrote ‘The Lizard’s Tail’ with only one purpose: to try to understand. I couldn’t manage to explain how such a supposedly intelligent and sophisticated people like the Argentines had fallen into the hands of this so-called sorcerer, a malevolent one at that.” (Valenzuela in an interview with The Review of Contemporary Fiction, 1986). Inscribed on half title page to Jim Leverett: "To Jim Leverett, / Thank you for opening this magic door for me - / with friendship and love, Luisa / Northhampton .86-" Light toning to top edge. Near fine. Item #3851


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