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Fictions

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4.48 of 5 stars 4.48  ·  rating details  ·  24,665 ratings  ·  1,065 reviews
Jorge Luis Borge's Fictions introduced an entirely new voice into world literature. It is here we find the astonishing accounts of Funes, the man who can forget nothing; the French poet who recreated Don Quixote word for word; the fatal lottery in Babylon; the mysterious planet of Tlön; and the library containing every possible book in the whole universe. Here too are the ...more
Paperback, 179 pages
Published September 7th 2000 by Penguin (Penguin Modern Classics) (first published 1944)
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Fëde It's from an argentinian author so... yes.
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper LeePride and Prejudice by Jane AustenJane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë1984 by George OrwellThe Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Must Read Classics
419th out of 1,043 books — 3,025 voters
Steppenwolf by Hermann HesseFictions by Jorge Luis BorgesHoly Bible by AnonymousInfinite Jest by David Foster WallaceThe Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Steve Sckenda
“All books are the work of a single author who is timeless and anonymous.”

“Their fiction has but a single plot, with every imaginable permutation.”

-- Tlon, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius

Jorge Luis Borges was a blind visionary of infinite imagination. My favorite Borges collection is “Ficciones” (“Fictions”), which consists of 17 short stories that Borges threads with fantasy, mysticism, Gnosticism and philosophy. Most of the stories are told in an intimate first-person point of view of the narrator (some
...more
Steve
Metaphor
Infinity Sophistry Penumbra
Symbolic LABYRINTH Heresiarch
Prefigured Philology Nihilism
Maze Allegorical

This may not be the prettiest word cloud ever constructed, but I think it’s a fair representation of the Ficciones experience. Much of the time spent trying to solve the stories’ puzzles involves bandying these concepts about. I can’t honestly say I understood them all, but moments when
...more
David
The peer pressure from my intellectually superior friends finally shamed me into reading this (as I had no Borges under my belt). Obviously from the 5 stars, I'm glad I caved in. This is a collection of 17 of his "best" short stories, held together merely by the thread that they are like nothing else you've ever read or even thought about.

Not every story is perfection, but all are surprising, irritating, challenging and somehow rewarding. Standouts are "Pierre Menard, Author of Don Quixote" - a
...more
Florencia Brino
Reading Borges is always a challenge. When you read his stories, it seems you are reading everyone else's. There is a lot of references in his work, and if you want to truly (kind of) understand it (or begin to), you have to do a little research. He ends up being an invaluable teacher.
Labyrinths, mirrors, libraries, dreams, fantasy, religion, philosophy, epistemology. My love for philosophical literature began with this author.
My all-time favorite story is “Las Ruinas Circulares”; the power of
...more
Mateo
Todavía no supero este libro. Creo, el mejor de todos los libros de cuentos Borgianos. Todavía no supero que los habitantes de tlön no crean en el espacio y su lenguaje este compuesto de una sucesión infinita de verbos. Todavía no supero la concepción de un empresa como la Pierre Menard, que buscas escribir el Quijote, me rindo a ayudarle en lo que pueda. Todavía no supero la daga, ni los laberintos, ni los tigres, ni el sur, ni las bibliotecas, ni al otro...

Todavía no supero a Borges.
Denisse
Read for the 2015 Reading Challenge: #12 A book of short stories.

Beautifully written, addictive, but complicated must of the time. Definitely worth reading. The stories cover a wide range of topics in an exquisite form.



Para lo corto del libro se tarda uno en leerlo. Borges escribe muy lindo pero hay algo en estas historias que me hacían sentir intimidada, no se que fue.

Los temas que tratan son muy variados, así que seguro hay alguno para ti. Las que a mi mas me gustaron fueron: Tlön, Uqbar,
...more
PGR Nair
( Note: This is an article I wrote in 2009 to mark the 110th birth Anniversary of Borges. Therefore, some of the stories I cite here may not belong to this collection. I thought to post it here as this book is the most cited. If you plan to buy a book of Borges, buy this one or Labyrinth and other stories as both contain the same set of stories and translators. His best translators are Norman Thomas di Giovanni and Anthony Kerrigan . Stay away from the translator Andrew Hurley)

THE BINOCULARS OF
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K.D. Absolutely
Nov 24, 2009 K.D. Absolutely rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Tata J (no one else among my friends can enjoy this book)
For me, reading has always been like connecting your brain to that of the book's author. Since January of this year, I have already finished 100 books and I never had experienced delving into a mind as scintillating as that of Jorge Luis Borges, the Spanish author of this strangely amazing (or amazingly strange) book - FICCIONES which means FICTIONS.

To understand the book, you really have to slow down and reflect on each phrase. It is different from reading Salman Rushdie who I find confusing be
...more
Glenn Russell
Even as a child, the Argentinian master storyteller Jorge Luis Borges lived among books and various languages -- myths, legends and literature from many civilizations and cultures: Spanish, Chinese, Persian, Nordic, to name just a few. His greatest childhood memory was his father's library; he was reading Shakespeare in English before the age of twelve; by the time he was an adult, Borges turned his mind into one vast library.

Borges did not write long, involved novels like David Copperfield, The
...more
Jim
This collection of short stories is a great introduction to Borges' fictional universe. At times his stories read like a non-fiction article or book review, but Borges sort of sneaks up on you and gives a tug at your conception of what constitutes real versus imaginary.

I would say that some of the stories are more engaging than others, but that's just a matter of personal interest. They are all worth reading, and recommended, especially to those who enjoy magic realism, fantasy, and sci-fi books
...more
[P]
I owe the discovery of El Matrero to Harper Lee. Five years ago I was spending the evening with my friend Renaldo Compostella, and, as was often the way, literature was our main topic of conversation. Renaldo, who always, or certainly more than I, kept an eye on forthcoming releases and bookish news, happened to mention the scheduled publication of a new novel by Harper Lee, the American authoress famous for To Kill a Mockingbird. The ensuing discussion was notable not for what we had to say abo ...more
Franco  Santos
Si alguien me preguntara quién es el autor con la mejor prosa que leí, sin lugar a dudas contestaría Jorge Luis Borges. Cada uno de sus cuentos explota en lírica y bucea por existencias sutilmente cambiadas que te ofuscan en un mundo aparentemente conocido en el cual una magia utópica y soñadora es realidad.

¿Es pesado? Sí.
¿Algunos cuentos, por no decir la mayoría, son incomprensibles? También: Borges nos ultraja nuestra capacidad de intelección. Aunque si después buscan su significado, van a en
...more
MJ Nicholls
The all-stars from this collection—‘The Library of Babel,’ ‘Pierre Manard—Author of Don Quixote’, ‘The Garden of Forking Paths’ and ‘Death and the Compass’, and so on comprise some of the finest and first pangs of the postmodern in book form. Reading the Sainted Borges feels at times like difficult math(s) homework or taking a primer in logical philosophy, and the dusty archaism of his references can make the stories feel like relics from the 18thC (both a plus and a minus), otherwise, the engag ...more
Morgan
Ok, I'd tried to read Labyrinths years ago and found it dry and dull. I thought that perhaps I just wasn't in the proper state of mind, or perhaps wasn't well read enough to get it. I'd also come off of a Calvino kick, so Borges felt boring. Fast forward to me thinking that I really should commit to Borges and give him a real chance.

I have to say that hard a hard time with this book. I only really like one story The Babylonian Lottery with The Circular Ruins, The Library of Babel, The Garden of
...more
Teresa
Jul 23, 2013 Teresa added it
I shouldn't write a review for this, much less assign stars to it (which I might not do by the time I'm finished writing). My GR friend Dolors has said it already, and so eloquently, too (here's Dolor's review), especially in her penultimate paragraph, its last sentence reminding me of Italo Calvino's If on a Winter's Night a Traveler, which I loved. None of the star rankings are applicable for me, though of course I recognize the work's brilliance and that it deserves 5 stars: I just don't thin ...more
Edward
The Garden of Forking Paths (1941)
Foreword

--Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius
--The Approach to Al-Mu'tasim
--Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote
--The Circular Ruins
--The Lottery in Babylon
--A Survey of the Works of Herbert Quain
--The Library of Babel
--The Garden of Forking Paths

Artifices (1944)
Foreword

--Funes, His Memory
--The Shape of the Sword
--The Theme of the Traitor and the Hero
--Death and the Compass
--The Secret Miracle
--Three Versions of Judas
--The End
--The Cult of the Phoenix
--The South

Afterword
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Poncho
Fiction and reality intertwine into a set of metafictional vastly little masterpieces, written in a very crafty and elegant way. A set, because all of them are, though indirectly, related to each other by their core, which is eternity. Vastly little masterpieces, because (here I speak for myself) even when I am not that fond of short stories, since they usually leave me in want of more, Borges's suit so well: they are neither too much nor too little; each word fits perfectly and are enough to le ...more
M. Sarki
http://msarki.tumblr.com/post/8547458...

As I was reading these stories, these ficciones, I was wondering where I might have heard this Borges voice before. And as I read it seemed to me that each story was important in its own rank as if derived from a serious study of an ancient text or the pouring over of history books detailing in no small measure the accounts that made up the results of whatever was being set forth. Of course, because the original Ficciones were written in Spanish and then t
...more
Teresa
Este livro fez-me sentir com cérebro de pulga. Não sei se gosto disso…
…devo gostar pois, em vez de desistir, li e reli cada conto há média de um por dia e, até ao conto/dia seguinte, ia “ruminando” sobre o seu significado.
No principio, ainda me iludi e convenci-me de que se fosse paciente e persistente iria ficar a entender, minimamente, o universo Borgeano. Qual quê! Quanto mais lia mais me afundava em confusão. Mas, estranhamente, também me sentia cada vez mais enfeitiçada com o livro, quer p
...more
Linda
I'm more a fan of "Artificios" than the actual "Ficciones" collection, though "El Jardin" remains one of the better ones from Ficciones. Reading this collection for my Boston book club made me realize that, having taught Borges short stories over the years and reading for my exams as a graduate student, I thought that I had read all of them.
But I hadn't; I encountered a few new ones here, namely "The End", which puts an end to the Martin Fierro story. So I've erased Borges from my "read" lists a
...more
Peter
Reading Ficciones takes time. It is Jorge Luis Borges' most well-known collection of short stories, and it is full of dense, imaginative pieces that are full of lots of stuff, and to get out of them what he has put into them, readers need to commit to reading slowly and carefully.

There are two interrelated elements, I think, that make reading Borges so challenging: the fantastic vision (read: like a fantasy), and the prose.

The Fantasy: Many pieces in Ficciones take place in imaginary lands or im
...more
Sue
Jul 16, 2015 Sue marked it as didn-t-finish  ·  review of another edition
After reading the first story I felt I might not be quite brilliant enough to read Borges works though I was able to appreciate the story itself. After trying to work my way through the next two stories, I felt these were obscure and abstruse. I don't have the time or patience to devote to the detailed reading which is apparently required in order to fully comprehend them or follow the inner workings. I tried one more but then realized I have shelves full of books and libraries also available to ...more
Leo Robertson
Re-read during work breaks :)

The best Spanish language author I have found so far.

"The Library of Babel" is the clear winner for me, and reveals Borges' power to engage the imagination to create such fantastical imagery, despite our knowledge of how few pages the image will last...

This unreal collection will subvert the normal, entrance, seduce and open your eyes to a labyrinth of chaos.
Bjorn

There have been far better storytellers than Borges, but most of them are chemists at best.

Borges' Fictions is (are?) curiously fragile. Which is not to say that they're poorly written, or that they don't hold up 70 years later, but simply that for most of these stories, I find myself wondering if they are indeed stories or simply thought experiments, essays on potential stories, a literary criticism of things never written (or, taken somewhat less literally, always and constantly written). Ther
...more
Sandra
E’ difficilissimo commentare questo libro. La maggior parte dei lettori lo definisce un capolavoro assoluto, un “classico contemporaneo”. Per me è stata una lettura assai complessa. Borges è uno scrittore per un lettore “erudito” –che non sono io-. Mi mancano le conoscenze letterarie di base per capirlo a fondo. E così scrivo di quel poco che sono riuscita a comprendere.
Innanzitutto il titolo: andando avanti con la lettura ho capito il perché del titolo. Finzioni significa astrazione dalla realt
...more
Lotz
17 August, 1967: I just finished Ficciones today. I also received it today. That is, today, three weeks ago; I mean, three weeks ago, today. (Three groups of seven, totaling twenty-one; or, in Arabic numerals, 3 x 7 = 21.)

I read the book once a day, for each of the days since receiving it. (A total of twenty-one times; 21/1 = 21.) The first week, I read the book in a different mood per day. I started off neutral. The next day, I recalled annoying instances from my past to put myself in an angry
...more
Ananthu
“No one saw him slip from the boat in the unanimous night…” So begins Borges’ The Circular Ruins , one of his stories that revolutionized Western Literature. A growing sense of tension and enigma hides behind Borges’ crystalline prose. The translator opines that ‘the effect of Borges’ style is brought through an exploding word or phrase, dropped as though offhandedly into a quiet sentence’. It is best seen in The Circular Ruins.

My lips parted in awe, not infrequently, whenever my eyes fell on
...more
Guido
Sono sempre sufficientemente ingenuo da lasciarmi sorprendere da Borges, dal suo modo di tendere dei fili invisibili tra il reale e l'immaginario; è un'arte subdola, una trappola in cui chi legge un racconto fantastico spera incessantemente di cadere. Impossibile stabilire con certezza quali dei riferimenti di Borges a libri, paragrafi, studiosi occultati dalla storia siano veri, puro sfoggio della sua erudizione; e quali invece si alimentino delle illusioni di un ignaro lettore che per la prima ...more
Nikki
I got along with Fictions a lot better than with The Book of Imaginary Beings; while it's still composed of various short pieces, each one has a plot and a purpose. The writing is beautiful; if the translation does any justice to the original, it must be gorgeous in its simplicity, while describing plots and settings that are anything but simple. I could almost go learn Spanish just to read Borges' own words -- though this Penguin translation by Andrew Hurley is a good one, and makes the stories ...more
M.
... kendisinin de bir hayal, bir başkasının düşü olduğunu anladı." (s.85)

Zamanın ve uzamın doğasını büken enfes; büyülü öykülerden oluşan bu az bilinen kitabı yeniden okumaya karar verdim. Şimdilik bu yalnızca bir tanışma faslı oldu. Defalarca okusam da doymayacağıma eminim.

Ayrıca öyküler Tomris Uyar ve Fatih Özgüven'in başarılı çevirileriyle daha bir lezzet kazanmış...

Okuyunuz, okutunuz.
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Jorge Francisco Isidoro Luis Borges Acevedo (Spanish pronunciation: [xoɾxe lwis boɾxes], Russian: Хорхе Луис Борхес) was an Argentine writer and poet born in Buenos Aires. In 1914, his family moved to Switzerland where he attended school and traveled to Spain. On his return to Argentina in 1921, Borges began publishing his poems and essays in Surrealist literary journals. He also worked as a libra ...more
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Labyrinths:  Selected Stories and Other Writings Collected Fictions The Aleph and Other Stories Selected Poems The Book of Sand and Shakespeare's Memory

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