THE LEGEND OF LA LLORONA
By Ray John de Aragón
Cover illustration by Rosa María Calles
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The folklore of Spanish America is full of exciting accounts of a wandering, shrieking, tormented spirit called La Llorona, the “Wailing Woman.” Her eerie spine-chilling cry was said to be an omen of death. This is the first serious account of the frightening tale that has fascinated people for generations.
Ray John de Aragón, an expert on Spanish folklore, traditions and myths, traveled throughout the villages and byways of New Mexico searching out the roots of this very popular Spanish phantom. What he found was that every person he listened to had a different version. They sometimes placed her in their own towns as having been a local girl who had lived, loved, and then died a tragic death. She then arose, according to hearsay, and now she searches throughout the countryside for the children she lost in a watery grave. Some villagers even took him to a nearby river or arroyo to show him where La Llorona and her children drowned, but they always cautioned, “Don’t come here late at night because she will appear to you crying, and she will follow you as you try to get away.” The author then took the threads of the stories he heard and has woven them in a full length study of this famous ghost. Noted folklorist Pedro Ribera Ortega called this book in a review, “The tragic mythic love/ghost story laid out to scare even the bravest of readers.”
RAY JOHN de ARAGÓN has a Masters in American Studies and has been a keynote speaker at public and historical conferences. He is the recipient of numerous awards and is the author of Padre Martínez and Bishop Lamy, The Penitentes of New Mexico, and Recollections of the Life of the Priest Don Antonio Jose Martínez, all from Sunstone Press.
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