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Isabel Allende


Isabel Angelica Allende

Internationally acclaimed writer, Isabel Angelica Allende, was born in 1942 in Lima, Peru and raised in Chile. She is among the worlds’ most important women novelists.

Ms. Allende is also a journalist and playwright, author of several novels, a short fiction collection, as well as stories and plays for children. Her most recognized writings are La casa de los espiritus (The House of the Spirits, 1982) and De amor y sombra (Of Love and Shadows), which were made into movies. Other books following soon after were Eva Luna, The Stories of Eva Luna, The Infinite Plan and Paula as she continues to write and publish her books.

Check her Web site at Her books have been translated into thirty languages and has sold more than 10 million copies worldwide. She has earned numerous awards.

Her parents, Tomás, a Chilean diplomat, and Francisca (Llona Barros) Allende (who was the sister of the late Chilean president, Salvador Allende) divorced when she was three. She traveled with her mother to Santiago, Chile, where she was raised in her grandparents' home. Allende graduated from a private high school at the age of 16. Three years later, in 1962, she married her first husband, Miguel Frías, an engineer. Allende also went to work for the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization in Santiago, where she was a secretary for several years. Later, she became a journalist, editor, and advice columnist for Paula magazine.

In addition, she worked as a television interviewer and on movie newsreels. She earned the Quality Paperback Book Club New Voice Award nomination for her debut novel, La casa de los espiritus (1982; The House of the Spirits)--which became a best seller in Spain and West Germany in the 1980s and a 1994 movie--and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize nomination for De amor y de sombra (1984; Of Love and Shadows). In 1988 Allende's third novel, Eva Luna, was voted One of the Year's Best Books by Library Journal. Allende wrote from a Latina's perspective of romance and hardships mixed with fantasy; a Latin America style of writing.

When her uncle, Chilean president Salvador Allende, was assassinated in 1973 as part of a right-wing military coup against his socialist government, Allende, her husband, and their two children fled to Venezuela. Having difficulty finding work Allende devoted her time to writing and began with her memories of her family and the political changes of her country, which brought her much success as the most popular female writer in the world.

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Edith Ramirez
Antonia Novello
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Rigoberta Tum
Ellen Ochoa
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Isabel Allende

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