"An extraordinary display of historical inquisitiveness and stylistic maturity."-The New York Times Book Review Exploring the consequences of the European discovery of the Americas and challenging the myth of Columbus, Alejo Carpentier-"the father of magical realism"-studies the first meetings of the Western and American cultures and the tragic consequences of tarnished and abandoned idealism. Alejo Carpentier (1904â€“1980) is considered one of the fathers of modern Latin American literature. He lived in Cuba, France, and Venezuela. Thomas Christensen and Carol Christensen have translated the works of Julio CortÃ¡zar, Laura Esquivel, and Carlos Fuentes.