Translated from the Spanish by Mrs. W.A. Gillespie. With a critical introduction by W.D. Howells.
de;ez does not go any farther than Galdós, for instance, he is yet more intensively agnostic. He is the standard bearer of the scientific revolt in the terms of fiction which spares us no hope of relief in the religious notion of human life here or hereafter that the Hebraic or Christian theology has divined.
It is right to say this plainly, but the reader who can suffer it from the author will find his book one of the fullest and richest in modern fiction, worthy to rank with the greatest Russian work and beyond anything yet done in English. It has not the topographical range of Tolstoy's War and Peace, or Resurrection; but in its climax it is as logically and ruthlessly tragical as anything that the Spanish spirit has yet imagined.
Whoever can hold on to the end of it will find his reward in the full enjoyment of that "noble terror" which high tragedy alone can give. Nothing that happens in the solemn story--in which something significant is almost always happening--is