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The Tower Struck by Lightning

3.8  ·  Rating Details ·  102 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
Acclaimed Spanish avant-garde playwright Arrabal has delivered himself of a bracingly intelligent, caustically funny first novel. Rebellious, artistic, ex-Jesuit seminarian Elias Tarsis, an Andorran Spaniard, is locked in struggle with Marc Amary, a coldly brilliant Swiss physicist turned financial speculator and Marxist terrorist. The battlefield: the final game of the wo ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published March 1st 1991 by Penguin Books (first published January 1st 1983)
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Nate D
Jan 06, 2017 Nate D rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: radical splinter sects
Recommended to Nate D by: Chessmaster 2000
Chess is life. i.e. Chess is sex, religion, madness, psychoanalysis, and extremist marxist politics. Probably a satire of the failure of the fragmented Left that was unable to prevent the rise of fascism across Europe in the mid-century (contemporary relevance?), but also too caught up in its world and twinned socio-political chess grandmaster histories to be entirely reducible as such. Which keeps it more involving than cleaner allegory. And despite the general weirdness of the protagonists, th ...more
Christopher Staley
Sep 30, 2007 Christopher Staley rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone interested in history, philosophy
You can't get any weirder or better than this one. The Tower Struck just goes to show that you can make your main characters blatant symbols and have your book not suck if you make it about chess and feature a creepy talking Mickey Mouse doll. Why bend a few rules when you can break them all.

Arrabal's pretty well known for his plays, but it's beyond me why he's not more famous than he is. His theater is far better than the annoying Ianesco (sp?), and his novels stand up to the weirder literature
Miguel Poveda
Jan 09, 2017 Miguel Poveda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
El pintoresco literato Fernando Arrabal nos plantea aquí una trama centrada en una partida de ajedrez, en la que los dos contendientes son dos personajes de lo más singular. En el transcurso de la partida, el lector conoce el devenir de ambos hasta que han llegado a jugárselo todo en ese último lance final por el Campeonato del Mundo de Ajedrez. Los dos se odian mutuamente y poco a poco se sabe por qué. El resultado es una obra muy original, con toques de puro surrealismo (algo que no extraña en ...more
Norbert Barth
Unterschiedliche Charaktere sitzen sich gegenüber und spielen um die Weltmeisterschaft im Schach. Während die Partie voranschreitet, erhalten die Leser Diagramme eingeblendet mit dem Ablauf der Partie. Zwischendurch fügt der Autor biographische Skizzen ein, um die Hintergründe der Schachspieler zu verstehen. Es war eine angenehme Lektüre während den Zugfahrten.
Mar 31, 2014 Denise rated it did not like it
About halfway through I got bored and started skimming. Just wasn't interested in all the stuff the two main characters did leading up to the final chess match. Sure am glad I didn't pay much for this book. Just didn't do anything for this reader although the chess play was good.
Margo Solod
Nov 22, 2007 Margo Solod rated it it was amazing
i love books about chess, which is odd, as i don't play it. and this is a magnificent read, clever, at times surreal, and yet the author is so skilled you are willing to go along for the ride. anywhere.
Feb 23, 2015 RavN rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Esperaba algo extraño, en la linea del teatro de Arrabal, pero me encontré una novela genial, con un final perfecto y redondo.
Alberto Delgado
a mi no me gustó este libro. Tal vez los jugadores de ajedrez lo valoren de forma distinta.
David Costo puerta
Mar 23, 2016 David Costo puerta rated it it was ok
Potencial bueno, secuestro y ajedrez, pero relleno malo solo con flashback de personaje muy pirados.
Dec 05, 2013 auiliuinti rated it really liked it
Shelves: letratura
Absolutamente genial.
Apr 02, 2008 Erik rated it it was amazing

the guy who wrote this was friends with Jodorowsky who directed those movies El Topo and Holy Mountain
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Fernando Arrabal Terán (born August 11, 1932 in Melilla, Spain) is a Spanish playwright, screenwriter, film director, novelist and poet. He settled in France in 1955, he describes himself as “desterrado,” or “half-expatriate, half-exiled.”

Arrabal has directed seven full-length feature films; he has published over 100 plays, 14 novels, 800 poetry collections, chapbooks, and artist’s books; several
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“And Nuria again saw hundreds, thousands, millions of slimy, horrible salamanders all around her” 1 likes
“I´m a Marxist, all right, Groucho tendency, and a Leninist, Lennon tendency” 0 likes
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