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News of a Kidnapping (Marquez 2014)

News of a Kidnapping (Marquez 2014) [Kindle Edition]

Gabriel Garcia Marquez
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)

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Product Description


Marquez uses his novelist's instinct for emotional drama to give the reader a wonderfully immediate sense of his subjects' ordeal: their spiraling hopes and fears, their fantasies of escape, their desperation and despair. (New York Times)

Product Description

Gabriel Garcia Marquez's News of a Kidnapping is a powerful retelling of actual events from a turbulent period of Colombian history.

'She looked over her shoulder before getting into the car to be sure no one was following her'

Pablo Escobar: billionaire drugs baron, ruthless manipulator brutal killer and jefe of the infamous Madellin cartel. A man whose importance in the international drug trade and renown for his charitable work among the poor brought him influence and power in his home country of Colombia, and the unwanted attention of the American courts.

Terrified of the new Colombian President's determination to extradite him to America, Escobar found the best bargaining tools he could find: hostages.

In the winter of 1990, ten relatives of Colombian politicians, mostly women, were abducted and held hostage as Escobar attempted to strong-arm the government into blocking his extradition. Two died, the rest survived, and from their harrowing stories Marquez retells, with vivid clarity, the terror and uncertainty of those dark an volatile months.

'Reads with an urgency which belongs to the finest fiction. I have never read anything which gave a better sense of the way Colombia was in worst times' Daily Telegraph

'Compellingly readable. A book with all the panache of Marquez's fiction, hitting home rather harder' Sunday Times

'A piece of remarkable investigative journalism made all the more brilliant by the author's talent for magical storytelling' Financial Times

As one of the pioneers of magic realism and perhaps the most prominent voice of Latin American literature, Gabriel Garcia Marquez has received international recognition for his novels, works of non-fiction and collections of short stories. Those published in translation by Penguin include Autumn of the Patriarch, Bon Voyage Mr. President, Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Collected Stories, The General in his Labyrinth, In Evil Hour, Innocent Erendira and Other Stories, Leaf Storm, Living to Tell the Tale, Love in the Time of Cholera, Memories of My Melancholy Whores, No-one Writes to the Colonel, Of Love and Other Demons, The Story of a Shipwrecked Sailor and Strange Pilgrims.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1323 KB
  • Print Length: 293 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin; Re-issue edition (6 Mar 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #143,779 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Gabriel García Márquez was born in Aracataca, Colombia, in 1928.

He has written a great number of books, including the masterpiece One Hundred Years of Solitude, and was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982. He now lives in Mexico City.

Márquez studied at the University of Bogotá and later worked as a reporter for the Colombian newspaper El Espectador and as a foreign correspondent in Rome, Paris, Barcelona, Caracas and New York. His first full-length work, One Hundred Years of Solitude, was published in 1967 to immediate worldwide success. The book is perhaps the prime example of Márquez's remarkable ability to present the supernatural as mundane and the mundane as supernatural. It chronicles the history of a family in the fictional town of Macondo - the loves, hates, rivalries, wars, successes and failures. The novel is an example of postmodernism, treating time with ambiguity and crossing genres and narrative styles. Salman Rushdie has described the book as "the greatest novel in any language of the last fifty years".

Another of Márquez's masterworks, Love in the Time of Cholera, was published to widespread acclaim in 1985. The book, a complex and compelling study of the myths we make about love, is less fantastical than One Hundred Years of Solitude but just as luminous and unique.He is the author of several novels and collections of stories, including Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Leaf Storm, No One Writes to the Colonel, In Evil Hour, One Hundred Years of Solitude, Innocent Eréndira and Other Stories, The Autumn of the Patriach,News of a Kidnapping, The Story of a Shipwrecked Sailor, Love in the Time of Cholera, The General in His Labyrinth, Strange Pilgrims, Of Love and Other Demons and the first first volume of his autobiography,Living to Tell the Tale. His most recent book is, Memories of my Melancholy Whores.

Many of his books are published by Penguin.

Nobel Prize for Literature

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
This book tells the story of a group of people kidnapped by Pablo Escobar, the world's most notorious drug dealer, as bargaining chips in his bid not to be extradited from Colombia to the US.
I read this book after I married a woman from Medellin whose family had been through the pain of a relative's kidnapping (thankfully only for ten days). I bought it on Friday night and had read it by Monday morning, it is genuinely a book you do not want to put down.
Garcia Marquez really gets to the heart of the issue and gets across the personal feelings experienced by the hostages... and also their families, politicians, the kidnappers etc. His writing is fantastic and keeps you engaged at all times.
The book is deeply sad but also heart-warming and I occassionally found myself laughing out loud as I read it. It brings home to the reader how important the things we take for granted actually are compared with the trivia we tend to get most wound up/excited about.
I highly recommend it to everyone.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars flawed 6 Feb 2005
Garcia Marquez returns to his original vocation as a journalist for this book, mixing factual reporting with narrative in documenting a series of kidnappings that took place during the turbulent period in Colombia at the beginning of the 90s.
It's an interesting idea to merge the two styles, providing the oppertunity to gain a deeper understanding of the reality that the victims had to endure and the events that occured in the wider context of the kidnappings; However, there was a sense of detachment throughout the whole book with the characters, who never really seemed to come to life....
Nevertheless, the book does go some way in conveying the complex political situations that occured during that time in an understable way.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The News of a Kidnapping 17 Feb 2012
By Mykey
You are welcome to Colombia: a home of green land, bright sun and blue seas. The creatures of the environment enjoy the cool air and tales told by the whispering trees. Things changed as time progressed. The birth of one man changed the beautiful face that was once Colombia. The man's name is Pablo Emilio Escobar Gaviria. He changed the scheme of things and introduced a monstrous existence with his mixed acts--drug sales, murder, kidnapping and internecine wars.

Give it to Gabriel Marquez narrating the ordeal faced by some citizens during these ugly times with an angry-beautiful pen. He was vested with the job of narrating things as they were in those bloody years in Medellin, Colombia. As usual, he didn't fail the reader. Every page flourishes like a flower with a thorny stem.

The kidnapped characters in the book begin to lose their mental stability as they were isolated and put away from the outside world's reality. After they were release, one could still feel their suffering as they struggled with memory and fitting into normal live. Columbia, one may conclude, will never forget those years with a book like this.

It is a story worth reading!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Power is a double-edged sword 16 May 2010
Within the violent framework of a Colombian State with a government without credibility, an ineffective judicial system and the abysmal level of its security forces, G.G. Márquez brushed a poignant picture of the war on drug trafficking with in depth portraits of the kidnapped, the traffickers, their foot folk, the civil authorities and the judges involved.

Drug trading means easy money, which is more harmful than the narcotics themselves. It provokes a social breakdown. It becomes a waste of time learning to read and to write. One can live a better life as a criminal than as a law-abiding citizen. The law becomes one's greatest obstacle to happiness.
The drug traffickers were unable to distinguish between good and evil.
Their foot folk (the guards) knew that they were going to die young and cared only about living for the moment.
Many of the judges and the magistrates had the choice between being bribed or being killed. Their salaries were barely enough to live on, but not to pay for the education of their children.
The government (and its president) changed tactics in the drug war. Drug traffickers could be extradited to the US, where they faced harsh sentences (P. Escobar: `We prefer a grave in Colombia to a cell in the US.') Those who surrendered and confessed to their crimes could receive the right not to be extradited.
The kidnapped lived a disturbing nightmare swinging between hope (to be released) and fear (to be killed).

With the kidnappings the Extradites (mainly P. Escobar) tried to force the government to grant them an irrevocable right not to be extradited and to have the right to choose their prison.
But power is a double-edged sword; one wields it and one is wounded by it.

With its news dispatches balancing between alarmingly bad and slightly hopeful messages G. G. Márquez wrote a remarkably realist psycho-thriller on a shaken society.
A must read for all lovers of world literature.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A factual novel 21 Aug 2007
By Teapot
In News of a Kidnapping, Gabriel Garcia Marquez rewinds temporarily and returns to his journalistic roots, covering the personal histories of some of the most notorious kidnap victims in contemporary Colombian history. Whilst in the foreground, Gabriel Garcia Marquez leads us through the horror of the daily lives of several of Escobar's most prominent kidnap victims, he carefully paints Colombia's political and social backdrop, revealing the part these victims had to play in the terrible tug-of-war that took place between the country's most prominent druglords (most noteably Pablo Escobar) and Colombian government.
Although unaccustomed to his journalistic style, I really enjoyed reading this book and really appreciated that it was so cold and clear and stripped of any magical realism and folklore.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars A tedious translation.
Quite a difficult read as it is tedious to begin with. It gets more interesting as it progresses if you care about the politics of Columbia.
Published 8 months ago by Rosemary Logan
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating account of the drug trade by its most capable writer
An account of billionaire drug trafficker Pablo Escobar’s attempts to influence government policy through a series of kidnappings. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Patrick CT
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterful
News of a Kidnapping achieves what most non-fiction fiction books are not able to do; it is gripping, tragic and moving without deviating from fact. Read more
Published on 6 Dec 2011 by L. Campbell
5.0 out of 5 stars García Márquez as a journalist
"News of a Kidnapping" reveals García Márquez first passion: journalism. Though it's a novel, it's inspired on a series of real events that happened on Colombia... Read more
Published on 24 April 2003 by dmpulp
5.0 out of 5 stars Life, grit and glory
This is the fictional account of a turbulent time when Pablo Escobar kidnapped several journalists and relatives of government ministers. Read more
Published on 14 Feb 2003 by Mr. Roderick W. White
2.0 out of 5 stars disappointed
Having read and thoroughly enjoyed 100 years of solitude, I thought I'd read one of Marquez's real life stories. I have to say though that I was less than impressed. Read more
Published on 18 April 2002
4.0 out of 5 stars Marquez does journalism!
In this book, Marquez uses his great story telling skills to relay to us the story of the victims of Pablo Escobars political kidnappings in Medellin. Read more
Published on 21 May 2001 by "johnussutherland"
5.0 out of 5 stars How can people live in such conditions?
How can people live in such circumstances? This book really brought home the effects of the Colombian "drug wars", as well as providing a great insight into the nature of... Read more
Published on 1 Feb 2001
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