Extended Audio Sample

Download The Mortifications Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Mortifications Audiobook, by Derek Palacio Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Derek Palacio Narrator: William DeMerrit Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: October 2016 ISBN: 9781524702922
Regular Price: $20.00 Add to Cart
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $17.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Add to Cart learn more )

Derek Palacio’s stunning, mythic novel marks the arrival of a fresh voice and a new chapter in the history of 21st century Cuban-American literature.

In 1980, a rural Cuban family is torn apart during the Mariel Boatlift. Uxbal Encarnación—father, husband, political insurgent—refuses to leave behind the revolutionary ideals and lush tomato farms of his sun-soaked homeland. His wife Soledad takes young Isabel and Ulises hostage and flees with them to America, leaving behind Uxbal for the promise of a better life. But instead of settling with fellow Cuban immigrants in Miami’s familiar heat, Soledad pushes further north into the stark, wintry landscape of Hartford, Connecticut. There, in the long shadow of their estranged patriarch, now just a distant memory, the exiled mother and her children begin a process of growth and transformation.

Each struggles and flourishes in their own way: Isabel, spiritually hungry and desperate for higher purpose, finds herself tethered to death and the dying in uncanny ways. Ulises is bookish and awkwardly tall, like his father, whose memory haunts and shapes the boy’s thoughts and desires. Presiding over them both is Soledad. Once consumed by her love for her husband, she begins a tempestuous new relationship with a Dutch tobacco farmer. But just as the Encarnacións begin to cultivate their strange new way of life, Cuba calls them back. Uxbal is alive, and waiting.

Breathtaking, soulful, and profound, The Mortifications is an intoxicating family saga and a timely, urgent expression of longing for one’s true homeland.

Download and start listening now!

bxew

Quotes & Awards

  • “William DeMeritt’s sombre tone evokes the ups and downs of this modern family torn apart…From the humidity of Cuba to the snow of Connecticut, listeners travel emotional and geographic distances, falling under the spell of these fascinating characters.”

    AudioFile

  • Extraordinary. . . . Palacio unspools his characters’ lives with the type of omniscient authority befitting an epic. . . . The narrative may operate on a grand scale, but Palacio is just as gifted a miniaturist, able to distill the unbearable ruptures in a family down to a single image. Dinaw Mengestu, The New York Times Book Review
  • A sweeping, lyrical tale of a family’s undoing. . . . Palacio’s prose contains moments of beauty and magic that are a pleasure to the ear. Dallas Morning News
  • Palacio writes vividly, conjuring smells and tastes of life both in the frozen north and the tropical Caribbean, from the sweat of a nun, for whom expensive soap might prompt ‘inclinations toward vanity’ to the flavor of tobacco and tomatoes. The Boston Globe
  • Some books are storms. Others are weather . . . Derek Palacio's debut novel, The Mortifications, is very much the latter. It is hot sun and cool rain, morning fog and the hum of a fan in the window. It ranges and roams, this book. When it settles onto a moment, it does so with the weight of ten butterflies. NPR
  • Derek Palacio may well be one of the best narrators to come out of the Americas since Gabriel García Márquez. Like One Hundred Years of Solitude, The Mortifications is a family saga that combines the uncanny with astute and accurate depictions of reality. The Washington Independent Review of Books
  • A powerful family saga.... Gorgeous and challenging.... Palacio’s writing is deceptively simple and startlingly original, and his characters, raw, almost mythic in scope, hang on long after the last page. Searching, heartbreaking, and achingly beautiful, the novel is as intimate as it is sweeping. Kirkus, starred review
  • The Mortifications is fascinated with bodies—especially the physical manifestations of emotions. . . . The novel doesn’t seem to want to sublimate the ugly, the putrid, or the decayed; it’s aware that describing abject bodily realities, in fiction, can in a sense turn them into obejcts of beauty. Bookforum
  • A New York Times Editor’s Choice
  • A New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice
Write a Review
What is FlexPass?
  • Your first audiobook is just $5.95
  • Over 90% are at or below $12.95
  • "LOVE IT" guarantee
  • No time limits or expirations
About the Author

Derek Palacio received his MFA in creative writing from Ohio State University. His short story “Sugarcane” appeared in The O. Henry Prize Stories 2013, and his novella How to Shake the Other Man was published by Nouvella Books. He is the co-director, with Claire Vaye Watkins, of the Mojave School, and serves as a faculty member of the Institute of American Indian Arts MFA program.

About the Narrator

William DeMerrit is a voice talent and AudioFile Earphones Award–winning narrator.