Jorge Luis Borges (1899 - 1986) was one of the greatest Argentinean's writers of all times. Since 1970 he was candidate to Nobel Literature Prize, which he never attained, but he well deserved. In 1980 he was bestowed Cervantes Prize, the Spanish major literary award. He influenced two generations of Latin American writers. Even those who despised him as "elitist writer" admired his powerful imagination and writing skills.
Jorge Luis was born in a high-class family. He was bilingual, due to his English grandmother. He moved with his parents to Europe where he resided from 1914 till 1921. When he returned to Argentina he fells in love with Buenos Aires. This love affaire begot several poetry volumes and inspired him many stories.
Borges was an omnivorous reader with a wide range of interests: from Cabbala thru Golems; from Mythology thru Gaucho's hardships; from Immortality thru Infinite; from Buddhism thru Christianity. His tales reflect this interest.
The present book contains a good 30 pages introduction in English and present Borge's texts in Spanish.
This volume encompasses two of the author earlier stories collections: "The Garden of Forking Paths" (1941) and "Fictions" (1944) and constitute a fair sample of his writings and style.
"La Loteria de Babilonia" describes an improbable world, ruled by fate embodied in a lottery game. "Funes el Memorioso" elaborates on what happens if a person may recall every instant of his whole life. "El Jardin de Senderos que se Bifurcan" is an elegant detective's story. "La Biblioteca de Babel", is one of Borge's best known texts, where he speculates on an infinite library containing every volume of human literature and gave way to mathematical conjecture.
In other tales the reader will get in touch with some themes very dear to Borges: mirrors, treason, solitary Hero, multiple divergent versions of the same character, whole universe created ex nihlo from his imagination and more much more.
This is a very good book for anyone interested in reading Jorge's work in his native language!
Reviewed by Max Yofre.