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Preview — The Third Reich by Roberto Bolaño
The Third Reich
On vacation with his girlfriend, Ingeborg, the German war games champion Udo Berger returns to a small town on the Costa Brava where he spent the summers of his childhood. Soon they meet another vacationing German couple, Charly and Hanna, who introduce them to a band of locals—the Wolf, the Lamb, and El Quemado—and to the darker side of life in a resort town.
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Goddammit! I’m pissed, pissed and a little troubled. I just finished The Third Reich, within the half-hour. I’m not one to pore over what I’ve just read—rehashing the ‘what did it means’ or a book’s merits or flaws, I like it or don’t, set a course and run with it. A hastily formed first impression, whether with books or people, is good enough for me. Opinionated, I suppose, but it’s me.
So, what do I make of The Third Reich? What indeed? Part of me, the part I favor, tells me this is every bit a...more
My initial review was just those three letters. But maybe I need to add more. This book is a perfect addition to the shelf of any reader who needs to convince others that their reading tastes are higher brow than most. Like Murakami and so many others on that same shelf, I wonder if the stilted writing and slow pacing is the result of poor translation. Pages and pages where nothing happens, and where the protagonist seems to be stuck in a slow-motion time warp, make for dull reading. Ever w ...more
I think Bolano felt the same way because in this book he examines how some people lose the connection to reality when they play games. It is no surprise that his central character ...more
Now, reader, meet El Quemado (translation: "the burn victim"), the owner-operator of a pedal boat rental business, who may or may not be h ...more
I have read some interesting reviews about this book. Sadly they all seem disappointed with it. I on the other hand found it quite thrilling.
At first I must admit that Roberto Bolano was a new name to me, but fresh eyes can usually see things that others cannot. While I think that other readers approached "Third Reich" as a Holy Grail, a lost unpublished manuscript only to find it unpolished I was optimistic.
A German war games champion Udo Berger o ...more
the third reich (tercer reich), found amo ...more
*το βιβλίο που όλοι πρέπει να διαβάσουν
The book, like all of Bolaño's work, has several layers of meaning, from the risk of taking hobbies too seriously, to taking history as a game, forgetting history's lesson, to a picture of a time and place in the Spanish tour ...more
Curiosity about the role that the war game was going to play in the development of the action was essential for me to continue after the first few pages -as I d ...more
Overall I enjoyed it, although it fade ...more
Read part 3 today and would strongly recommend the book. A young German, Udo Berger, plays war games, mainly one called The Third Reich, in his hotel room on the Costa Brava in Spain. The war games are only the backdrop for weird and sometimes wonderful goings on on the beach, in bars, and in the hotel.
One of the book's strengths is the 1st person narrator WWII) has to be viewed as a version of the naiv ...more
Long version: I'd never read any Bolano before. This probably wasn't the best place to start. It was unpublished during the author's lifetime, and reads like it was unfinished. I'm usually skeptical of the practice of treating unpublished manuscripts as if they complete works, and this book does little to change my mind. The plot points and thematic elements are developed, but don't go anywhere but wandering off down the beach. The characters' motives are not clearly establish ...more
Bolaño moved to Europe in 1977, and finally made his way to Spain, where he married and settled on the Mediterranean coast near Barcelona, working as a dishwasher, a campground custodian, bellhop and garbage collector — working during the day and writing at night.