The latest addition to my website is Emiliano Monge‘s El cielo árido (The Arid Sky). This novels tells the story of Germán Alcántara Carnero, known as El Gringo, from conception in 1901 to death in 1981. El Gringo is a local boss and is happy to use whatever violence he needs to keep the local indigenous population and priests under control. Torture, brutal murders and horrible deaths are all part of his modus operandi, as we follow his rise to the top. Then, aged fifty-five, he decides to retire. However, he does not know what to do with himself nor how to control his anger, till he meets Dolores. However, as the narrator comments, a man may escape his life but never his shadow.. Monge shows a violence-filled life, from his violent conception to his violent death and lots in-between, an indication of what life has been and is in Mexico.