Top positive review
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Fantastic imagery and a superbly inventive tale
on 9 August 2015
I have had One Hundred Years Of Solitude on my kindle for nearly a year now, since I enjoyed losing myself in my first Gabriel Garcia Marquez novel, Love In The Time Of Cholera. One Hundred Years is equally as immersive a novel which tells the story of a remote South American village from its inception to its happy years, on through a nationwide civil war, to its near destruction by greedy white industralists, and through years of constant monsoon-like deluge. I love the huge scale of the story, especially as it is contained within a single small village and, a lot of the time, in one large house.
The extended Buendia family are the central pivot and their matriarch, Ursula, is a great character. She sees several generations live and die, stay near or travel away, and all named for the generation before which leads to incredible potential confusion for the reader. It seemed at times as though all the many male characters were named either Jose Arcadio or Aureliano! Initially I tried to remember the familial relationships of each as they were mentioned, but this became far too baffling so I instead just kept reading and found that discreet indications in the text allowed me to know about whom I was reading as I got to know the family better.
Marquez' knack for language and description is fabulous. I loved imagining the invasion of the schoolgirls, Aureliano playing the accordion at his parties, the Colonel becoming wearied of endless war, Melquiades continuing despite death, the old Jose tied to the tree, the candied animals and the little gold fishes, the gringos locked behind wire fencing in their chicken coop houses, the people becoming moss-covered in the endless rain. One Hundred Years Of Solitude is worth reading for its imagery alone, but when so many human stories are threaded through as well, the novel transforms into a superb experience.