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Idomen, or The Vale of Yumuri

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By: (1794-1845)

Idomen, or The Vale of Yumuri is a beautifully written and captivating novel that transports readers to the lush landscapes of Cuba. Maria Gowen Brooks's vivid descriptions bring the setting to life, allowing readers to envision the picturesque valleys and exotic flora of Yumuri.

The story itself is filled with romance, adventure, and intrigue, following the journey of the intrepid Idomen as she navigates the complexities of love and family in a society steeped in tradition. The characters are well-developed and relatable, making it easy for readers to become emotionally invested in their fates.

Brooks's prose is elegant and poetic, drawing readers in with its lyrical language and insightful reflections on human nature. The themes of love, sacrifice, and redemption are expertly woven throughout the narrative, adding depth and complexity to the story.

Overall, Idomen, or The Vale of Yumuri is a captivating and enchanting read that will appeal to fans of historical fiction and romance. Brooks's portrayal of Cuba is both evocative and immersive, making this novel a must-read for anyone looking for a literary escape to a bygone era.

Book Description:
Idomen (1843) is the creative-nonfiction memoir of the beautiful and brilliant American poetess Maria Gowen Brooks, who was compared in the 19th century to Byron and Swinburne. In it she tells the story of an ill-fated love affair she had twenty years earlier while traveling with her young son in Canada following the death of her much older husband. The traumatic breakup led to suicide attempts on her part, which romantic masochist Brooks byronically relates in full, albeit changing everybody's name. Herself she calls Idomen, which is apparently idiomatic Greek for "we shall see" – as indeed we shall!

(Incidentally, the well-traveled Brooks had inherited a plantation in Cuba upon the death of her brother from malaria and went back there to live after Idomen was published, only to die of the same disease herself not long after.)

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