Atacama Desert

Fiction and Poetry

The Essential Neruda: Selected Poems, Pablo Neruda, 2004
This selection of some of the best poems from Nobel Prize winning poet Pablo Neruda will serve as a wonderful introduction to this captivating country.

Antipoems: How to Look Better & Feel Great, Nicanor Parra, 2004
Parra, winner of the Cervantes Prize, the most important prize for Spanish-language literature, deftly mocks pretensions in poetry and everyday life.

My Invented Country: A Nostalgic Journey Through Chile, Isabel Allende, 2004
Historic facts like the assassination of her uncle, President Salvador Allende, in 1973 accompany anecdotes and pointed inferences, as Allende distills the essence of what it is to be Chilean.

The Little School, Alicia Partnoy, 1986
Named for the concentration camp where she spent nightmarish years, Partnoy’s book is a concise, poignant account of a hope sustained in the face of unimaginable cruelty.

The House of the Spirits: A Novel, Isabel Allende, 2005
Allende weaves a luminous tapestry of three generations of the Trueba family whose lives reflect the post-colonial social and political upheavals of Chile.

Daughter of Fortune, Isabel Allende, 1999
Spirited Eliza follows a man from her Chilean hometown to California during the height of the Gold Rush where she embarks on the journey of a lifetime.

Children and Teens

The Dreamer, Paul Munoz Ryan, 2010
The fictional biography of Nobel- Prize-winning poet Pablo Neruda traces the journey of a shy boy as he grows up in Chile.

Buried Alive: How 33 Miners Survived 69 Days Deep Under the Chilean Desert, Elaine Scott, 2012, ages 9 and up
A suspenseful account of how 33 men trapped two thousand feet below the earth’s surface worked together to survive and eventually be brought to safety.

Folktales from Chile, Brenda Hughes, 1998, ages 7 and up
Fifteen tales bring together the native culture of Chile’s original inhabitants and of the Spanish who colonized the area. Volcano spirits, songbirds and sorcerers are among the many protagonists in these colorful stories.

The Composition, Antonio Skarmeta, 2000, ages 8 and up
This thoughtful story evokes life under a dictatorship as seen through the eyes of a nine-year-old village boy. Pedro is asked to write an essay about what his parents do at night; his political awareness begins to emerge.


Missing, Costa Gavras, 1982
This controversial film starring Jack Lemmon, Sissy Spacek and John Shea is based on the true story of US journalist Charles Horman, who disappeared during the 1973 coup by Pinochet.

Machuca, Andrés Wood, 2004
Set in the years leading up to Pinochet’s 1973 coup, the film tells the story of an unlikely friendship that develops between two young boys.

180 Degrees South, Chris Malloy, 2010
This documentary follows the voyage of Jeff Johnson, who was following Yvon Chouinard and Doug Tompkins 1968 trip from California south to Patagonia. He stops along the way in fascinating destinations such as Easter Island. Interviews with Chouinard and Tompkins (founders of Patagonia and North Face respectively) are featured.

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