The novel


SMALLER COVERArauco tells of war between two peoples … and of a love demonstrating that a man can embrace what he was seeking to destroy.

When in 1540 Pedro de Valdivia left Peru to conquer lands south, he took with him his beautiful mistress, Inés de Suárez.  With him also rode his secretary, Juan de Cardeña, whose hopeless love of Inés stems from the same romances that inspired Don Quixote. Crossing the Atacama Desert and founding the city of Santiago, then taking their conquest south, the Spanish encounter the indomitable resistance of the Mapuche….

For the first time, Arauco  recreates the invasion of the land now called Chile from both the Spanish and  native points of view, so that its pages also include: Lautaro, the Mapuche youth who led his people to an epic victory; Ñamku, albino shaman of the Mapuche; his sworn enemy, the sorcerer Kurufil.  And Arauco also tells of Raytrayen, the Mapuche girl Juan de Cardeña came to love….



6 thoughts on “The novel

  1. Mr. Caviglia,
    I am a fan of your blog and this website and now I am looking forward to devouring ARAUCO which I have just purchased. Since I share the Hoosier legacy with your mother (born in Indy) I also wish you continued success in your career; I know I will enjoy your lyrical take and what must be epic research on the history of this little known people. By the way, how do you say or spell “rainbow fish” in Mapudungan?
    Thank you,
    Tom Williams

    • Welcome aboard, Tom. As it happens, you also share the Hoosier legacy with me, for my family moved to Crawfordsville, Indiana, when I was eight, and I ended up going to Wabash College. I am a little puzzled by your fish question … but in Mapudungun rainbow is relmu and fish is challwa, so–relmuchallwa (there’s a guide to pronouncing Mapudungun in this blog). Hope that helps. Also, if it’s rainbow trout you’re referring to, it is not native to Chile, though it has been introduced. Mari mari. John

  2. Hi, I want to thank you for this great book you`ve written. I am a Norwegian girl, adopted from Chile, more precisely, Temuco where there lives a lot of Mapuche people, as you know. I am interested in their culture and language, and before I found your book, I did not know much Mapudungun. Also happy that the history of Mapuche may reach new readers.
    So nice to read this book, still not finished, but enjoying it in not to fast tempo. I will recommend this to family and friends!

    • Delighted that you’re enjoying Arauco, and that you will recommend it to family and friends. And I trust that you find the blog of interest, as well. It would be good to hear from you when you finish the book. Happy reading!

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