Marquez is a master in weaving this complex, at times disorienting, timeline of a century of family history. I discovered this novel by chance at a used book store. I didn’t know Marquez’s writing, and had no idea what I had stumbled upon. Even in translation (to English) his use of language is mesmerizing. It is not such an easy read to start, and it does take time to settle into the style of writing. At first confusing, some persistence pays off. Letting go and giving into the strangeness allows the reader to join in the magical world that Marquez creates. The style of writing is so beautifully unique and as unusual as the world it paints. Intricate details are strung together throughout the story, and gradually come together to reveal the master tapestry of this tale. Things that seem at first unbelievable become natural, and the ridiculous begins to seem normal. Reading this book is an experience, like taking a journey to another place that can only exist in imagination. Memories of this place and this family will stay with you and tempt you to return for multiple reads. And while you are gone, you can imagine the story continuing in its circular motions.
What did you think of this review?
It is typical of Gabriel García Márquez that it will be many pages before his narrative circles back to the ice, and many chapters before the hero of One Hundred Years of Solitude, Buendía, stands before the firing squad. In between, he recounts such wonders as an entire town struck with insomnia, a woman who ascends to heaven while hanging laundry, and a suicide that defies the laws of physics:
A trickle of blood came out under the door, crossed the living room, went out into the street, continued on in a straight line across the uneven terraces, went down steps and climbed over curbs, passed along the Street of the Turks, turned a corner to the right and another to the left, made a right angle at the Buendía house, went in under the closed door, crossed through the parlor, hugging the walls so as not to stain the rugs, went on to the other living room, made a wide curve to avoid the dining-room table, went along the porch with the begonias, and passed without being seen under Amaranta's chair as she gave an arithmetic lesson to Aureliano José, and went through the pantry and came out in the kitchen, where Úrsula was getting ready to crack thirty-six eggs to make bread.
"Holy Mother of God!" Úrsula shouted.
The story follows 100 years in the life of Macondo, a ...