By Salman Rushdie

"I didn't visit Nicaragua aspiring to write a booklet, or, certainly, to write down in any respect: yet my stumble upon with where affected me so deeply that during the tip I had no choice." So notes Salman Rushdie in his first paintings of nonfiction, a publication as innovative and significant as his acclaimed novels. within the Jaguar Smile, Rushdie paints a brilliantly sharp and haunting portrait of the folk, the politics, the terrain, and the poetry of "a nation within which the traditional, opposing forces of construction and destruction have been in violent collision." Recounting his travels there in 1986, in the course of America's behind-the-scenes warfare opposed to the Sandinistas, Rushdie finds a state resounding to the clashes among executive and contributors, heritage and morality.

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292. Hotel América, Granada (& 95-82274-71): This former private villa, 12 The Best Restaurants • El Amparo, Madrid (& 91-431-6456): In the old days of Franco, gastronomes flocked to Jockey or Horcher. Today their savvy sons and daughters head to El Amparo, the within the walls of the Alhambra, is one of the most popular small hotels in Granada. Its cozy guest rooms are filled with reproductions of Andalusian antiques. Plants cascade down the white plaster walls and the ornate grillwork onto the shaded patio.

The baroque is similar to Renaissance, but many of the right angles and ruler-straight lines are exchanged for curves of complex geometry and an interplay of concave and convex surfaces. • Multiplying forms. To create a rich, busy effect, the baroque loved to pile up its elements, such as columns, pediments (low-pitched, triangular features above a window, door, or pavilion), or porticoes (projecting pavilions). • Churriguesque decorations. The style was characterized by a proliferation of statues, curves, carvings, and twisted columns stacked into pyramids.

The most important artist of the last century, Picasso dipped his brush into several of the important early-20th-century movements, helping establish cubism and redefine surrealism in the process. Though he lived in France after 1904, Spain has always hungrily acquired his works to serve as stars of modern art museums from Bilbao’s Guggenheim Museum to Madrid’s Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, which houses his masterpiece Guernica (1937), a bleak, confusing polemic about the horrors of war. Many of his early works are housed in Barcelona’s Museu Picasso, where you find surprising examples of his teenage talent for realism.

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