Customer Review

43 of 47 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I'm not sure I get it, 6 April 2009
This review is from: Love in the Time of Cholera (Paperback)
Having made it an ambition of mine to read the BBC's top 100 books (from 2003) I found myself anticipating Love in the Time of Cholera. I had heard from various sources that it was a really good read, though as one reviewer describes it, a book that the reader has to connect with and feel more than some others mentioned. I do understand why some people think that it is such a great read but truthfully I found myself bored to tears. As it was one of the books I had most anticipated reading I felt I had to finish it, and I'm glad I did as it does improve, however the majority of the book charts the history of a couple that never was. Part of what annoyed and bored me about Love in the Time of Cholera is that it is not really a love story - Daza rejects Ariza when they are young and he just cant get over it so ends up screwing his 14year old charge when he is 60. Even this slightly shocking event is made dull and acceptable and even mundane with the novelist acting as though it is perfectly normal for a child to sleep with her supposed guardian. I thought i was getting a love story but found at the end that I really did not want Daza and Ariza to get together, they just didnt seem suited!
I know that this will go against the grain and possibly be an unpopular review due to this but I felt that a balance of opinions is necessary so that future readers dont feel as I felt when I finished it - that I was not getting it, that I was lacking in the intelligence or literary smarts to understand and see the point of this novel.
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Tracked by 2 customers

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Showing 1-8 of 8 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 30 Nov 2010 23:15:21 GMT
danae says:
dont you ever think that you lack the intelligence or literay smarts, its the flavour you got, the taste in your mouth you didnt like.
which is fine. its your opinion and its precious and valuable.
i love gabrile garcia's writing,
but I also found really disturbing that incidence with the 14 year old. I was deeply socked and disgusted. I was very young at the moment and that only added to my negative feelings.
however, so many years later I think that this book talks about the love stories we keep alive in our life, unable to live them or live a satisfying reality. they are a substitute to our reality and our reality is a substitute for that fantasy world.. living in that limbo , our whole life can pass without actually living anything.

Posted on 11 May 2011 18:59:59 BDT
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on 29 May 2011 09:42:59 BDT
S. Vincent says:
I too have antcicipated reading this book for a while, and indeed started it a couple of times. One of most annoying things, is that it doesn't clearly state where or when the action is set -you are aware that you are in the Caribbean area but the rest is left to supposition. I agree with mrslavendereye that the love story isn't really there - a long, boring read which I am detern=mined to get to the end of as I hate not finisheing books, but sorr- it didn't do it for me either.

Posted on 26 Sep 2011 15:34:46 BDT
Vixey says:
I actually agree with this review. I starting reading the book for the same reasons, and had high hopes for the story given the great reviews. I too did not engage with the book and found it rather boring.

Posted on 2 Oct 2011 17:11:10 BDT
Sue says:
I totally agree a hefty book, with no discernable breaks to lighten the load. Ariza is a completely unlikeable character, so whether you like the style of writing or not, it is a complete chore. I am glad I am not the only one who has no idea where it is set.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Feb 2012 11:54:31 GMT
Danny Sigma says:
I think that the placing in the BBC top 100 has led a lot of people (often through book groups) to read this novel when perhaps otherwise they might not have done. Though I entirely respect your point(s) of view, GGM is never going to write a 'conventional' love story. For likeable characters and/or a spiritually uplifting message, people might be better sticking to Paolo Coelho and the like. For a warts and all examination of the human (and particularly the male) psyche, GGM's your man.

In reply to an earlier post on 20 Mar 2014 11:52:49 GMT
tobykin says:
I was about to order it as I was also recommended this book but have now decided against it. I think that the fact the the guardian 'ends up screwing his 14year old charge' really puts me off. Whether it is to do with my lack of intelligence or unable to appreciate the 'great literature' I don't really want to read it. Thanks for the review.

Posted on 9 Jun 2014 15:09:21 BDT
PennyD says:
I found this book tedious in the extreme. Agree with above reviewer that casual acceptance of paedophilia is hard to swallow, and felt little sympathy for or involvement with any of the characters.
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