The Brilliant, Bestselling, Landmark Novel That Tells The Story Of The Buendia Family, And Chronicles The Irreconcilable Conflict Between The Desire For Solitude And The Need For Love In Rich, Imaginative Prose That Has Come To Define An Entire Genre Known As Magical Realism 25 45 505 , R I P Gabriel Marcus Your Magical Realism will always enchanting and illuminating our hearts , will defeat the dirty realism that we unfortunately stuck in Your magical words and novels will be read foreveryou re enchanted 24 2014 2 2014 So I know that I m supposed to like this book because it is a classic and by the same author who wrote Love in the Time of Cholera Unfortunately, I just think it is unbelievably boring with a jagged plot that seems interminable Sure, the language is interesting and the first line is the stuff of University English courses Sometimes I think books get tagged with the classic label because some academics read them and didn t understand and so they hailed these books as genius These same academics then make a sport of looking down their noses at readers who don t like these books for the very same reasons If this all sounds too specific, yes I had this conversation with a professor of mine.I know that other people love this book and power to them, I ve tried to read it all the way through three different times and never made it past 250 pages before I get so bored keeping up with all the births, deaths, magical events and mythical legends I ll put it this way, I don t like this book for the same reason that I never took up smoking If I have to force myself to like it, what s the point When I start coughing and hacking on the first cigarette, that is my body telling me this isn t good for me and I should quit right there When I start nodding off on the second page of One Hundred Years of Solitude that is my mind trying to tell me I should find a better way to pass my time. More like A Hundred Years of Torture I read this partly in a misguided attempt to expand my literary horizons and partly because my uncle was a big fan of Gabriel Garcia Marquez Then again, he also used to re read Ulysses for fun, which just goes to show that you should never take book advice from someone whose IQ is than 30 points higher than your own.I have patience for a lot of excesses, like verbiage and chocolate, but not for 5000 pages featuring three generations of people with the same names I finally tore out the family tree at the beginning of the book and used it as a bookmark To be fair, the book isn t actually 5000 pages, but also to be fair, the endlessly interwoven stories of bizarre exploits and fantastical phenomena make it seem like it is The whole time I read it I thought, This must be what it s like to be stoned Well, actually most of the time I was just trying to keep the characters straight The rest of the time I was wondering if I was the victim of odorless paint fumes However, I think I was simply the victim of Marquez s brand of magical realism, which I can take in short stories but find a bit much to swallow in a long novel Again, to be fair, this novel is lauded and loved by many, and I can sort of see why A shimmering panoramic of a village s history would appeal to those who enjoy tragicomedy laced heavily with fantasy It s just way too heavily laced for me. What is your favourite book, mum How many times have my children asked me that, growing up with a mother who spends most of her time reading to them, alone, for work, for pleasure or looking for new books in bookstores wherever we happen to be I can t answer that, there are so many books I love, and in different ways Just name one that comes to mind And I said, without really knowing why, and without thinking One Hundred Years Of Solitude Why Because This novel taught me that chaos and order are two sides of the same medal called family life It taught me that sadness and love go hand in hand, and that life is easy and complicated at the same time It taught me that many wishes actually come true, but never in the way we expect, and most often with a catch It taught me that sun and rain follow each other, even though we might have to wait for four years, eleven months and two days for rain to stop falling sometimes It taught me that there are as many recipes for love as there are lovers in the world, and that human beings are lazy and energetic, good and bad, young and old, ugly and beautiful, honest and dishonest, happy and sad, all at the same time, together and lonely.It taught me that we are forever longing for what we do not have, until we get what we long for Then we start longing for what we lost when our dreams came true.This novel opened up the world of absurdities to me, and dragged me in like no other In each member of the Buend a family, I recognise some relation, or myself, or both Macondo is the world in miniature, and wherever I go, it follows me like a shadow It is not rich, peaceful, or beautiful It is just Macondo No , no less.My favourite book I don t know There are so many But I don t think any other could claim to be loved than this one. 32 magical realism , 500 , 500 , i remember the day i stopped watching cartoons an episode of thundercats in which a few of the cats were trapped in some kind of superbubble thing and it hit me that, being cartoons, the characters could just be erased and re drawn outside the bubble or could just fly away or tunnel their way out or teleport or do whatever, really, they wanted afterall they were line and color in a world of line and color now this applies to any work of fiction i mean, Cervantes could ve just written Don Quixote out of any perilous situation, but it just felt different with a lowest common denominator cartoon it felt that adherence to reality reality as defined within the world of the cartoon wasn t a top priority this ended my cartoon watching days and i ve pored over it in the years that followed was it a severe lack or an overabundence of imagination that made it so that while all my friends were digging saturday morning cartoons i alternated between tormenting my parents and attempting to use logic to disprove the fact that everyone i knew and everyone i ever would know was gonna die i had a similar experience with One Hundred Years of Solitude the first chapter is just brilliant gypsies bring items to Macondo, a village hidden away from mass civilization by miles of swamp and mountains these everyday items magnets, ice, etc are interpreted as magic by people who have never seen them and it forces the reader to reconfigure his her perception of much of what s he formerly found ordinary amazing and then the gypsies bring a magic carpet a real one one that works and there is no distinction b t magnets and the magic carpet this, i guess, is magical realism and i had a Thundercats moment lemme explain the magic carpet immediately renders all that preceded it as irrelevant are ice and magnets the same as magic carpets what is the relation between magic and science how can i trust and believe in a character who takes such pains to understand ice and magnets and who, using the most primitive scientific means, works day and night to discover that the earth is round but then will just accept that carpets can fly or that people can instantaneously increase their body weight sevenfold by pure will or that human blood can twist and turn through streets to find a specific person fuck the characters, how can i trust the writer if the world is totally undefined if people can refuse to die and it s not explained who or how or why where are the stakes if someone can make themselves weigh 1000 pounds, what can t they do how can i care about any situation if Garcia Marquez can simply make the persons involved sprout wings and fly away should the book be read as fairy tale as myth as allegory no i don t think it s meant to be read solely as any of those and i d label anyone a fraud who tried to explain away a 500 page book as mere allegory over, i don t believe Garcia Marquez has as fertile an imagination as Borges or Cervantes or Mutis three chaps who, perhaps, could pull something like this off on storytelling power alone but three chaps who, though they may dabble in this stuff, clearly define the world their characters inhabit so i m at page 200 and i m gonna try and push on but it s tough do i care when someone dies when death isn t permanent and do i care about characters who have seen death reversed but don t freak the fuck out which is inconsistent with what does make them freak the fuck out and who also continue to cry when someone dies yes, there are some gems along the way, but i think had Solitude been structured as a large collection of interconnected short stories kinda like a magical realism Winesberg, Ohio it would ve worked much better this is one of the most beloved books of all time and i m not so arrogant damn close to discount the word of all these people although I do have gothboy, DFJ, and Borges on my side a strong argument for or against anything , and not so blind to see the joy this brings to so many people i fully understand it s a powerful piece of work but i really don t get it and i aggressively recommend The Adventures and Misadventures of Maqroll to any and all who find Solitude to be the end all and be all. I guarantee that 95% of you will hate this book, and at least 70% of you will hate it enough to not finish it, but I loved it Guess I was just in the mood for it Here s how it breaks down AMAZING THINGS I can literally feel new wrinkles spreading across the surface of my brain when I read this guy He s so wicked smart that there s no chance he s completely sane His adjectives and descriptions are 100% PERFECT, and yet entirely nonsensical After reading three chapters, it starts making sense and that s when you realize you re probably crazy, too And you are We all are.The magical realism style of the book is DELICIOUS Sure, it s an epic tragedy following a long line of familial insanity, but that doesn t stop the people from eating dirt, coming back from the dead, spreading a plague of contagious insomnia, or enjoying a nice thunderstorm of yellow flowers It s all presented in such a natural light that you think, Of course Of course he grows aquatic plants in his false teeth Now why wouldn t he This guy is the epitome of unique Give me a single sentence, ANY SENTENCE the man has ever written, and I will recognize it Nobody writes like him Also, his sentences average about 1,438 words each, so pretty much it s either him or Faulkner REASONS WHY MOST OF YOU WILL HATE THIS BOOK I have to engage every ounce of my mental ability just to understand what the is going on Most people who read for relaxation and entertainment will want to send Marquez hate mail Also, there are approximately 20 main characters and about 4 names that they all share I realize that s probably realistic in Hispanic cultures of the era, but SERIOUSLY, by the time you get to the sixth character named Aureliano, you ll have to draw yourself a diagram Not even the classic Russians suffer from as much name confusion as this guy.On an uber disturbing note, Marquez has once again as he did in Love in the Time of Cholera written a grown man having sex with a girl as young as 9 which is pretty much 1 on my list of Things That Make You Go EWW He makes Lolita look like Polyanna on the virtue chart Note to authors You give ONE of your characters a unique, but disgusting characteristic and it s good writing Give it to than one, and we start thinking we re reading your psychological profile, ya creep If you feel like pushing your brain to its max, read it The man did win the Nobel after all, it s amazing But get ready to work harder to understand something than you ever have before in your life And may God be with you.FAVORITE QUOTES coincidentally also the shortest ones in the book She had the rare virtue of never existing completely except at the opportune moment.He soon acquired the forlorn look that one sees in vegetarians.Children inherit their parents madness.He really had been through death, but he had returned because he could not bear the solitude.The air was so damp that fish could have come in through the doors and swum out the windows.He was unable to bear in his soul the crushing weight of so much past.It s enough for me to be sure that you and I exist at this moment.A person doesn t die when he should but when he can. Mystical and captivating.One Hundred Years of Solitude by Nobel laureate Gabriel Garc a M rquez, first published in 1967 in his native Colombia and then first published in English in 1970, is a unique literary experience, overwhelming in its virtuosity and magnificent in scope.I recall my review of Tolstoy s War and Peace, trying to describe a book like it and realizing there are no other books like it it is practically a genre unto itself That said, One Hundred Years of Solitude is a masterpiece of narrative ability, and is itself unique as a statement, but reminiscent of many other great books Pasternak s Doctor Zhivago, Lowry s Under the Volcano, Buck s The Good Earth, and Joyce s Ulysses were the works that I thought of while reading, but no doubt this is a one of a kind.Using all of the literary devices I have ever learned and making up many as he went along, Garc a M rquez established a new epoch of descriptive resonance Magic realism and hyperbole abound in his fantastic history of the mythical town of Macondo separated by mountains and a swamp road from everything else and of the Buend a family, whose lifeblood was the dramatic heart of the village from inception until the fateful end.Garc a M rquez employs incestuous and repetitive family situations to emphasize his chronicle and a dynamic characterization that is labyrinthine in its complexity Dark humor walks the ancient halls of the ancestral mansion home along with the ghosts of those who have come before Incredibly Garc a M rquez ties it all together into a complete and prophetically sound ending that breathes like poetry to the finish.Finally I must concede that this review is wholly inadequate This is a book that must be read 2018 I had a conversation about this book recently and I was asked what was the big deal why was this so special It had been a while since I had read but my response was that after turning the last page I was struck dumb, had to walk the earth metaphorically for a few days to gather my thoughts on what I had read really than that, what I had experienced I read alot of books and a book that smacks me like that deserves some reflection.Another indicator to me, and this is also subjective is that I have thought about this book frequently since I read a book and enjoy it, was entertained and escaped for a while into the writer s world, and then I finish and write a review, slap a 3 star on it and go to the next book There are some books, years later that I have to refresh my memory who wrote that what was it about Not so with 100 years Like so many other five star ratings, this one has stayed with me and I think about Macondo sometimes and can see the weeds and vines growing up through the hardwood floors This is a special book.
- 417 pages
- Cien años de soledad
- Gabriel García Márquez
- 10 August 2017 Gabriel García Márquez