When was it decided that literary writers shouldn't write about adventure? Once upon a time authors like Stevenson
were associated with swashbucklers, now classics, Treasure Island
and The Three Musketeers
; today they'd be laughed right out of the canon and consigned to the ghetto of cheap paperbacks. With Zorro
, Isabel Allende bucks the rules of literary writers by penning a red-blooded adventure novel about the legendary masked avenger. Forget Douglas Fairbanks, George Hamilton, and Antonio Banderas — Allende's Diego de la Vega out-Zorros them all. Packed with white-knuckled duels, sweeping rescues, and pulse-pounding pirate battles, Zorro
is a great novel for the wide-eyed child in you — and Allende even adds an unreliable narrator to intrigue the adult side. The result is a terrific summer read that's a guilty pleasure without the guilt.