Tuesday, June 3, 2008

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez

Title: One Hundred Years of Solitude
Author: Gabriel García Márquez
# pages: 448
Date published: 1970
Genre: Classic
Challenge(s): Book Awards Reading Challenge (1982 Nobel Prize in Literature); 888 (trade paperbacks I own); A Novel Challenge Mini Challenge #7 (classic)

Rating: (not my favorite)

Setting: Latin America

First Sentence:

“Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice.”

Synopsis: One Hundred Years of Solitude tells the story of the rise and fall, birth and death of the mythical town of Macondo through the one hundred year history of the Buendía family.

Random Thoughts: In turns confusing and brilliant, I don’t think I’ve ever read a more odd but engaging book. I didn’t hate One Hundred Years of Solitude and I’m not sorry I read it, but I’m also glad that it’s over. I doubt I’ll do it again. I know a lot of people love Marquez’s writing in general and One Hundred Years of Solitude in particular, but this is not destined to become one of my favorite books. I prefer books with more plot and less meandering. In fact, the meandering sort of drove me crazy and by the time I got close to the end of the book, I was desperately counting how many pages I still had left to read. I am curious about Love in the Time of Cholera, though. Anyone read both books? Care to compare and contrast? Is it possible that someone who didn’t like One Hundred Years of Solitude might like Love in the Time of Cholera? Or should I just give Love in the Time of Cholera a pass?

Let’s give people a variety of opinions! If you've reviewed this book (or a book by this author), leave me a link to your review in the comments and I'll link to your review, too!


Marg said...

I loved this when I read it in my pre-blogging days, and have loved the other books I have read by him. For this book, I do definitely think it helped to be reading it along with a group so that you could discuss it as you went along. I don't know that I would have enjoyed it anywhere near as much if I had read it by myself.

Amanda said...

I had the same experience with this book that you did. The meandering almost drove me crazy too! I didn't hate it but didn't love it either. Although looking back there are parts of the book that has stayed in my mind. I also read it when I was 18 so I'd like to see how I like his writing now that I am older. I'm wanting to try Love in the Time of Cholera as well to see how I like that one.

Kim L said...

Now I haven't read this book, but I have heard it compared to "House of the Spirits" by Isabel Allende. The allende book meandered quite a bit and didn't really tell an actual story until towards the end, it just kind of explored the history of this one family. I still want to read this book, but I will be forewarned that it is long and meandering :-)

Sharon said...

This book is on my TBR list for one of the challenges I joined. doesn't sound too. I may push it back a little. Thanks!