January 20, 2010

Literary Pick (*****)

100 Years of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)

I found this book a few days ago in a junk pile among other beloved classics. I brought them all home.

I've never read a book that was a continuous and inexhaustible series of events that continued to unravel and turn like a never-ending wheel. And that is exactly what 100 years of solitude is like, events that kept recycling themselves from generation through generation with new births of Aurelianos' and Arcadios'.

I was immediately intimidated by this novel ever since I read about the suicide that "defies the laws of physics". I've never gravitated towards the kind of fantasy literature that would do a thing like that. I assumed the entire book would be of that nature, and It is, and it's great! This novel was fascinatingly rich beyond the imagination of art, super-naturalism and surrealism.
Gabriel Garcia writes so confidently and convincingly, you don't stop to question the delusional world he has created. Macondo is a place, somewhere, no one knows where, but it exists.
It's definitely the kind of a book someone has to read to understand how these occult happenings make sense, but in the village of Macondo they do and it's ok! The Buendia family is deliriously alive!! I had a hard time putting this book down. It's not what I expected at all.

I loved Ursula.

I found it interesting that Prudencio Aguilar (who was dead) couldn't locate his friend Jose Arcadio Buendia (who was alive) until Melquiades himself dies, because up until then no one had died in Macondo to note it on the Motley Map of Deaths (on the other side).
I also loved the tale about meme and her lover, Mauricio Babilonia, whose presence she always sensed because butterflies followed him everywhere.

I read that Garcia Marquez locked himself up for 14 months in order to write this novel, and it makes sense. The imagination required to write all these stories needed solitude. I cannot imagine keeping all those details of tales straight while socializing with the outside world on a


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