Group Read: 100 Years of Solitude

DiskuteraClub Read 2011

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Group Read: 100 Years of Solitude

Denna diskussion är för närvarande "vilande"—det sista inlägget är mer än 90 dagar gammalt. Du kan återstarta det genom att svara på inlägget.

1Nickelini
jun 30, 2011, 12:12pm

At the beginning of the year a few of us proposed reading 100 Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, this summer. So here we go . . . does anyone want to join in?

2lilisin
jun 30, 2011, 3:02pm

Oh lucky! I read that back in high school and really enjoyed it. If I were a re-reader I'd join you guys but I'll at least follow your comments as you read it.

3Nickelini
jun 30, 2011, 5:01pm

Oh good ....I think we might need some encouragement. I know I'm feeling a little daunted.

4Deern
Redigerat: jul 1, 2011, 3:29am

I'll join you. It's a reread for me, this time I'll use the English translation. I read the German edition some years ago and liked it alot, although Spanish often is not translated well into German. I hope to enjoy the English version even more.

For members of the 75-group: it's also a shared TIOLI book for July (challenge #1).

Edit: oops, just noticed that I am now in "Club Read" and not in "1001". I hope that's okay.

5pgmcc
jul 1, 2011, 4:08am

Like lilisin, I read 100 Years of Solitude some time ago. I would love to join in on the discussion when it gets going. I so often find that I don't have the time to read a group read and the discussion is over before I get half way into the book.

By the way, I really enjoyed it. I have lived in a rural environment, not as remote as the town in García's book, and I could relate to a lot of what happened in the novel in terms of people's attitudes and reactions to outside influences. Also, I am of an age that I have seen gradual changes take place and can say García's portrayal of evolving existence in a remote part of the world comes across as very realistic, as do his descriptions of interpersonal relationships and perceptions.

Good luck with the read. I'll drop in now and again if you don't mind.

6billiejean
jul 1, 2011, 7:19am

Thanks for the invitation to the group read in the 1001 group. I am ready to start this one today!

7Nickelini
jul 2, 2011, 6:19pm

BillieJean - I'm starting today too.

8kidzdoc
Redigerat: jul 2, 2011, 6:32pm

I'm in. I'll be reading the English translation by Gregory Rabassa that was published by Avon Books in paperback in 1971. I have a couple of novels to read ahead of it, so I probably won't start it for a couple of weeks.

9wandering_star
jul 3, 2011, 12:28am

I'm in too, also with the Rabassa translation.

10billiejean
jul 3, 2011, 1:52am

I have the same translation. Looking over the family tree at the beginning, I am wondering if I will have trouble telling the family members apart.

11Deern
jul 4, 2011, 5:23am

I got the Rabassa translation as well. I am on page 175 now and I am surprised how much of the plot I had forgotten. I find the writing so beautiful and dense, I really need all my concentration not to miss something. And I am very grateful for the family tree which my old German edition didn't have.

12rachbxl
jul 4, 2011, 7:31am

More encouragement from me! Like Lilisin I'm not much of a re-reader so I won't be joining in, but I read it at university and loved it.

>10 billiejean: I worried about telling the family members apart too, but they came across in the telling as such distinct individuals that I had no problem at all.

Oh, I'm envious...

13billiejean
jul 4, 2011, 9:42am

So far, I seem to be keeping them straight. Because of the holiday weekend, I am still near to the beginning.

14pgmcc
jul 4, 2011, 10:41am

#10 My recollection is the same as rachbxl's in that I found the family members quite separate. It had been a concern of mine as I have had that problem with other multi-generational novlels.

15billiejean
jul 4, 2011, 2:45pm

So far so good. But so many people have the same name.

16billiejean
Redigerat: jul 4, 2011, 11:51pm

I was wondering if anyone has any thoughts on Rebeca's diet? Why would she eat that?

17Deern
jul 6, 2011, 2:29am

#16: maybe it's the equivalent of cutting/ wounding yourself. There seems to be enormous pressure on her soul at times and eating earth (and becoming sick) might give her some false 'relief'.

I can deal with the names as long as I am reading about the respective characters. I start confusing them once they are dead and are referred to as 'someone's father'.

I had remembered this book as a quicker read, and I am surprised at how long it takes me to get through 10 pages.

18billiejean
jul 6, 2011, 9:18am

#17> That makes sense to me. Thanks!

19Nickelini
jul 6, 2011, 12:32pm

8, 9, 10 & 11 -- is there another English translation? I didn't think the book was old enough to have been translated multiple times. I have read somewhere that Rabassa's edition is even better than the original.

I myself am finding the sentence structure overly-convoluted and thus far I'm just letting the art wash over me. About 75 pages in, I'm not really engaged yet, but I'm not minding it. However, if it doesn't click soon, this will be a very long read.

20rachbxl
jul 6, 2011, 3:45pm

>19 Nickelini: I suspect it was Rabassa said that...(in fact, doesn't he say it in If this be Treason?)

I read it in Spanish so I've no idea from my own experience, but I've always been under the impression that there were at least 2 translations, from things I've heard from people over the years.

21billiejean
jul 7, 2011, 12:57am

I am about 40% of the way through the book, and it just keeps getting better. In a way, it reminds me of Midnight's Children, in that I feel like I could get so much more out of this book if I knew more about the history of Colombia.

22rebeccanyc
jul 7, 2011, 1:53pm

#19, 20, If I remember it correctly, I believe it was GGM himself who said the English translation was better than the Spanish original, but this could have been as quoted in If This Be Treason, although it's so long since I read that I don't remember.

23Nickelini
jul 12, 2011, 12:10pm

How is everyone doing with this? I"m just over half way through and enjoying it more. I still find some of the very long paragraphs exasperating, but there's enough good stuff to keep me going. So much about this book reminds me of Midnight's Children.

24billiejean
jul 12, 2011, 2:03pm

I agree that it just gets better and better as it goes along.

25Nickelini
jul 19, 2011, 2:35pm

Oprah picked One Hundred Years of Solitude for her book club at some point, so there is a section of her website devoted to the book: http://www.oprah.com/oprahsbookclub/Synopsis-of-One-Hundred-Years-of-Solitude

I thought there was some interesting stuff there. Take a browse if you have a few minutes.

26Nickelini
jul 19, 2011, 9:47pm

I finished! I liked it but didn't love it.

27wandering_star
jul 24, 2011, 5:19am

I am having real problems with this. I can see that one of the themes is cycles, so the same things are repeating themselves in different generations. But that seems to be happening at the expense of any sort of sense of the characters as individuals. I think my problem is that when A falls in love with B or runs away with C, it seems to come out of nowhere, so to me as a reader it's meaningless - the author could just as easily have had A do something completely different.

I'd really like to know what those who enjoyed the book were looking at so I can maybe focus on those parts.

By the way, I would say I was a fan of magical realism - I love Midnight's Children and enjoyed Love In The Time Of Cholera, Isabel Allende's books etc. So it's not that which is bugging me.

28Deern
jul 24, 2011, 5:41am

#27: this might not help you much, but I didn't look at the plot at all or tried to find a sense in it, I just let it all happen and "concentrated" (not really the right expression here) more on the writing. I often read sections aloud, very slowly. It took me three weeks to get through it which is unusually long for a book of 400 pages.

29pgmcc
jul 24, 2011, 6:53am

#27 #28
The main thing I took from the book was the reality of the situation. It was not about plot, but about reality, its sameness, and all its surprises.

Having lived in a somewhat remote rural area, but not anywhere as remote as that described in the book, I could see how perceptions developed, how rumours spread, how facts were contorted, how what we consider mundane and boring can be seen as amazing and earth shattering.

Apart from the excellent writing, albeit viewed through translation, I admire this book for its evocation of the spirit of a community isolated from centres of power and civilisation. It is the world before the bicycle; before motorways; before rapid communications.

In terms of the characters, I could relate to many of them and know people who fitted the "type" due to similar circumstances.

For me, this was enough to hold One Hundred Years of Solitude in high regard, and to have enjoyed it.