“Sometimes the swamp-forest visibly thins away from these shores into wastes of reedy morass where, even of breathless nights, the quaggy soil trembles to a sound like thunder of breakers on a coast.”
Images are expertly imbued into the mind by vivid description. In Chita, Lafcadio Hearn paints life on a marshy, eclectic Gulf Coast island in the middle of the nineteenth century. Chita is a young white girl who is orphaned by a shipwreck and then adopted by a Spanish family on the island. Languages, cultures, and people collide and meld into a nebulous, but distinctive, way of life.
Written during a ten-year stay in New Orleans, Chita was Hearn’s first novel. It is filled with beautiful language and emotion, and evokes a true sense of the location and the era.
About the Author
Lafcadio Hearn was born on a Greek island, to a Greek mother and Irish father, and raised in Dublin, Ireland by his aunt. At nineteen he moved to the United States, where he became a newspaper reporter in Cincinnati, and then went to New Orleans. Hearn spent the remainder of his life in Japan—a place where he thought he could escape the materialism of the Western world—married a Japanese woman, became a Japanese citizen, and taught at Japanese universities. Lafcadio Hearn, or Yakumo Koizumi in Japanese, was the author of several books and a collection of lectures.
A Memory of Last Island
By Lafcadio Hearn
FICTION / Historical
208 pp. 5 x 7
ISBN: 9781565549715 pb (F)