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José Donoso: Coronación (Coronation)

Don Andrés Àbalos is the symbol of the decadence of the Chilean aristocracy. He has led a fairly meaningless and empty life during his fifty-eight years but everything changes when a seventeen year old peasant girl, Estela, comes to live in his house to look after his senile grandmother. Don Andrés, to his own chagrin, falls in love with Estela. However, she is not interested, as she already has a boyfriend. Her boyfriend and his brother, with the collusion of Estela, decide to rob Don Andrés’ house. Donoso gives us a wonderful portrait of the decline and fall of the Chilean aristocracy as represented by Don Andrés, as well as the loneliness and emptiness of their lives.

Publishing history

First published in Spanish 1957 by Zig-Zag
First published in English 1965 by Knopf