12. Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

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12. Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Post  twunny on Thu Mar 04, 2010 4:19 am

A novella by the author of One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera.

This is the story of a man getting murdered by twin brothers avenging their sister's honor. Essentially, the entire town knows that it is going to happen, but a variety of circumstances prevent anyone from preventing the killing.

Unlike the other Marquez books I've read, this one is told in first person. The narrator is one of the townspeople, but someone who was not around for the killing. He belongs to a family that is peripherally related to both the killers and the victim. He returns to the scene of the crime twenty-odd years later, to try and piece it all together, mostly from rumor and conjecture.

This seemed to be missing something. There wasn't the romanticism and otherworldliness of One Hundred Years of Solitude. And for such a short work (120 pages), there were a lot of names and circumstances. Everything was told out of order, sometimes with one thing not easily segueing to the next. It had a very meandering feel for at least the first half.

But the language is clear, even in translation. The story is compelling and by the end, I was entirely rapt. A great addition to the author's body of work, but not among his masterpieces.

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