One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I'd like to think this book defies description, but I lie. It's pretty much an epic 5 generation story of a mythical Columbian town rife with magical realism. There's a lot of walking dead, dead stored in bags, dead bleeding on the streets, and the not quite dead of a peep that lives for over 500 years. Never mind the magic carpets or the thousands of people with the same damn name. It's a family that will damn well reuse a loved name over and over because they loved the originals so damn much.
Huh. Well, as long as I've now given up on tracking them except by their place in time and the events, I rolled with it and listened to the ever-growing complexity of the cyclical tales written simply and passionately, feeling like the town is the MC, from it's founding (birth), it's part in the civil war (troubled teens), and it's modernity (this came out in 1967, so just assume there's lots of passionate free-love sex (in marriage)).
Here's the thing about preconceptions. I never looked up what the novel was about, so I based it entirely on the book cover and the freaking title. So what did I think as I read this?
Where's the freaking solitude!!!!!????
Sigh. This novel is FULL OF PEOPLE, people. I mean, lordy, they're everywhere and in everyone's faces. I kept looking forward to the science-minded and scholarly peeps because they, at least, wanted a little time alone! It was tiring for me to keep up with so many damn people! (except, of course, in a flowing tapestry of sensation and recurring themes, of course. That part was actually damn pleasing.)
Did I study and draw diagrams to keep track of everything in this novel? Hell no. I considered it, but in the end, I didn't care enough to do much other than take it all in with huge gulps, burping every once in a while, but determined to drink every last drop.
It was good, dammit. The writing was smooth as silk and managed to accomplish so much so economically, that I see why it's considered a classic. Will I ever try this one again?
No. Likely not. I don't like admitting that a novel tired me out. :)
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