What impress me more of A Century of Ashes is the atmosphere. That hell created beside the Mississippi river, in Tennessee, U.S.
The Fiodorovich family fights to survive in a snuff plantation during a century: from the middle of the 19th century, when the first family members start the business, to the middle of the 20th century, when the last members die… consumed by their own irrational sins.
In this novel, Martin Cid creates a collective protagonist and the Mississippi river is its voice and eyes, the blood of this wild family from Russia. They arrive to the United States when there are slaves and they will be unable of adapting to a democratic society.
Bad men, worse women, they increase their tobacco business during the two World Wars…, no feelings, only money, because all is a joke, the joke of those people who are condemned to Hell, the hell that they have created. They like it, because it is better the known world than the future one.
During a century, they have seen great changes and they dislike them: people keep on suffering and they prefer their known sufferings because they know how to prevent them.
All is ashes… all is a joke. The hell is as good as the heavens if you know how to survive among sinners.