Books: Mystery Mosaic

MANUEL THE MEXICAN (370 pp.)—Carlo Coccloli—Simon & Schuster ($4.50).

Nineteen hundred years after Christ was crucified outside Jerusalem, a Mexican child whose father was a man named José and whose mother was called Maria de Jesús was born in a mulecart at Tepoztlán, an Indian village between the capital and Cuernavaca. His mother had him christened Manuel.

Twenty-one years later, on Good Friday, 1954, Manuel was crucified on a hill outside Tlaltenalco. He had been scourged; real thorns bloodied his head; those about the cross wore armor—not of Roman soldiers but such as Cortes' men had worn when he brought the cross and...

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