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Of Love and Other Demons

3.98 of 5 stars 3.98  ·  rating details  ·  30,268 ratings  ·  1,166 reviews
On her twelfth birthday, Sierva Maria, the only child of a decaying noble family in an eighteenth-century South American seaport, is bitten by a rabid dog. Believed to be possessed, she is brought to a convent for observation. And into her cell stumbles Father Cayetano Delaura, who has already dreamed about a girl with hair trailing after her like a bridal train. As he ten ...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published May 2nd 1995 by Penguin Group (USA) (first published 1994)
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Aida Delaura confessed to the Bishop everything, with the exception of his love for the girl. The Bishop felt his interactions with the Dr were bordering…moreDelaura confessed to the Bishop everything, with the exception of his love for the girl. The Bishop felt his interactions with the Dr were bordering on heresy, as forbidden books were considered treasonous. Rather than have him go in front of a tribunal, he vanquished him to the lepers hospital ward. (Somethings lose their meaning in the translation.) (less)
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcí­a MárquezThe Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey NiffeneggerThe House of the Spirits by Isabel AllendeLike Water for Chocolate by Laura EsquivelLove in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez
Favorite Magical Realism Novels
34th out of 825 books — 3,710 voters
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcí­a MárquezLove in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcí­a MárquezThe House of the Spirits by Isabel AllendeLike Water for Chocolate by Laura EsquivelThe Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
Latina/Latino Fiction
15th out of 504 books — 764 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Laura
This book starts off very slowly and almost slyly, as if someone has started telling a long-winded story and you're really not paying attention, and then, halfway through the story you realize that you're hanging onto every word. If Garcia Marquez explored the metaphor or love as a disease in "Love in the Time of Cholera", then here he centers his story around the metaphor of love as madness and demonic possession. I think the metaphor actually works better than the cholera one. This book feels ...more
Kelly
May 25, 2007 Kelly rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Marquez fans, lovers of beautiful language
This was not the first book of Marquez's that I have read. I read Love in the Time of Cholera when I was in my late teens. I found it so utterly surreal and unlike anything I had ever experienced before. I wasn't sure if I liked it, precisely, but I knew that I wanted more. I was gripped by it, possessed by it, which was not quite the same experience as 'liking' a novel, exactly.

The next one I picked up after that was this one. Of Love and Other Demons. I can safely say that I felt the same way
...more
Samadrita
I have always drawn parallels between Marquez and Murakami not only because of the common element of magical realism so discernible in their works, but also because of their talent for splendid imagery.
But it goes without saying, there's a pronounced difference between their styles as well.

While I understood perfectly well that Murakami likes to crack open the spine of a city bustling with life and activity on the surface and fish out its soul from the intimidating depths of its anatomy, Marque
...more
Franco  Santos
2.5 estrellas.

El primer libro que leo de Gabriel García Márquez y tengo que decir que me gustó. Es una novela corta, que se lee en una sentada.

-¡Qué lejos estamos!
-¿De qué?
-De nosotros mismos.


El inicio es interesante, aunque tengo que admitir que me costó involucrarme con la historia. Luego todo se empieza a esclarecer en el segundo capítulo y, a partir de ahí, el relato se disfruta mucho más.

No hay medicina que cure lo que no cura la felicidad.

En algunas partes se me hizo bastante pesado por el
...more
Tash




I recently watched the movie version of this book, and I did not love it, mostly because I only understand the most rudimentary of Spanish and the movie's English subtitles were horrible. Regardless, I still bawled like a baby, because Of Love and Other Demons is one of the most, if not the most, tragic story I've ever had the pleasure of reading.

Of Love and Other Demons is the story of a pre-teen girl Sierva Maria, her affliction which is mistaken as demon possession and her days with Father Ca
...more
Ian
It seems this is one you either love or are indifferent to. I found myself leaning toward the indifferent. The underlying story of a young girl being removed from the comforts of wealth based upon misdiagnosis and ignorance is of itself fascinating, the scene setting fabulous. To overlay that with a doomed romance between a handsome priest and a prepubescent girl is heady stuff, then further layered with themes of the demonic and the insane, and yet it simply failed to enliven my senses. Maybe p ...more
K.
Marquez begins his story with a note. In this note, he describes arriving at a convent in the process of being emptied and turned into a luxury hotel. Laborers unearthed "three generations of bishops and abbesses and other eminent personages" until, at last, they came to a niche of the high altar where they found the tomb of a twelve-year old girl called Sierva Maria de Todos Los Angeles. She had hair the color of copper and it flowed out of her head twenty-two metres long.

And so a story is bor
...more
Gearóid
Really incredible!
This was only a very short book but every sentence was really beautiful and I just took my time to savour every word.
I'm not sure what magical realism is but it this is magical realism then I love it!!!!
Not only did Marques write amazing prose but he was also a great storyteller.
Have read a good few of his books but now must read them all!

Linda
My favorite Gabo book so far (and Ive read more than one or two).

I was just going to leave it at that, but since I just finished it, I may as well write down why it merits space on my favoritesshelf while I still have the taste of black beans and rice in my mouth and the smell of the ocean in my hair......

First, I am happy to see in other reviews that Im not the only one whos noticed the trend of men falling in love with prepubescent girls in Gabos works--that wasnt the author we studied in col
...more
Lavinia
Yummy, captivating reading, from the very first sentence. There's a lot of blah about the book, just look around, plenty of reviews and opinions; everything is magic of course, and the story telling*, oh! the story telling is absolutely fantastic, so I'll just make a confession: I have a terrible, secret passion for priests who fall madly in love and run away with the object of their desire, go nuts or do something crazy. Here, not so secret any more.

*mental debate on who's a better story teller
...more
Emir Never
Some ventures we have to be prepared for like putting up your own business, proposing a marriage, or Gabriel García Márquez.

One can hardly come up with a list of benefits for sporadic, lazy reading habits, but I'll count reading the acknowledged wizard of magical realism this late in my life a consequential blessing all the same. I don't think I'd appreciate this book if I were a decade younger, my concentration then would be highly suspect. Ironically, reading Of Love and Other Demons now is l
...more
Denis
My introduction to Garcia Marquez. Loved it from the first sentence to the last, and fell immediately under the spell of his famous "magical realism" (which infuses the story itself as well as the way it's written). It is magical indeed, and wonderfully sad as the love stories we want to read about should be - it's also, despite being relatively short, epic in a way that, I sense, is typical of Garcia Marquez' world. Some could reduce it to a fairy tale for adult - it is really much more than th ...more
Jason
Dec 17, 2012 Jason added it
Shelves: read-2011
I must admit that while I enjoyed this immensely, I did not enjoy it as much as most other Marquez. It isn't just that I have grown tired of his pedophilia storylines, though that doesn't help, but rather that this story doesn't do as interesting job of blending the real and the fantastic and the moment that opens the story, so beautiful in its absurdity, seems to bear little resemblance to the story that follows, which is a shame because a concentration on the fantastic, rather than the mundane ...more
Suad Shamma
This is perhaps the most disturbing love story that I've ever read. EVER. But that's what makes it so hauntingly great.

I have slowly been working through Gabriel Garcia Marquez's books, and I've yet to be disappointed by his work. This is such a fascinating tragic tale of love that it completely supersedes Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet in my opinion.

A tale that brings to question love, faith, parenthood and so much more. You have a young girl, thought to be demonic and possessed, who was bitt
...more
Zoe
I saw this described in another review as “mesmerizing.” Yes, it was mesmerizing. It’s made my Favorites list, but I can’t really describe it. It starts off with an author’s note. The author prefaces the story with a description of a visit he had made to a crypt. When a tomb is opened & 2,000 years worth of live, copper colored hair spills out Gabriel is suddenly reminded of a story he heard long ago.

In this book he embellishes on the story of a saint, a young girl who died at age 12 from r
...more
Miguel
«O corpo humano não está feito para os anos que poderíamos viver.»

O amor levar-nos-á eternamente à condição mais sufocante e libertadora, porque se alimenta das nossas vontades e ilusões incontidas… Mas a vida sem sonhos e quimeras é certamente desconsolada e insípida, segundo a perspectiva dos personagens viventes de Do Amor e Outros Demónios !

Gabriel García Márquez escreve sem pudor e com muita consistência. Não duvidamos das histórias que cria, com coesão, habilidade e contexto histórico.
...more
Bogdan Liviu
Dezamagirea e colosala pentru c-am fost extrem de entuziasmat s-o citesc. Nu m-a captivat absolut deloc, mi-a fost cu neputinta sa ma atasez de vreun personaj. Poate-s prea batran pentru a mai citi cu pasiune despre superstitiile oamenilor "religiosi". Nici relatia bolnava dintre preot si fata respectiva n-a avut impact, dar inteleg de ce unora le-a placut atat de mult, sunt teme interesante abordate, imi pare rau ca am avut atatea asteptari - poate de-asta sunt si atat de drastic in rating, n-a ...more
Paulina
Primer libro de García Marquéz y me encantó.
Definitivamente encontraré otro de él.
L.S.
Cu ceva timp în urmă am avut un vis sau mi-am imaginat – nu pot să îmi dau seama – un castel în a cărui temniţă era închisă o tânără cu părul lung. Ea era vizitată în timpul nopţii de unul care avea capacitatea de a se deplasa pe ziduri, inclusiv în poziţii nefireşti, a la Dracula lui Bram Stoker. Nu aş putea să-mi explic această superpoziţie ciudată cu ideile lui Marquez. Poate că se datorează faptului că ideile nu sunt ale nimănui; zboară primprejur ca îngerii.

O fată este muşcată de un câine t
...more
Carmo Santos
Pobre Sierva Maria; odiada pela mãe e ignorada pelo pai, cresceu rebelde no meio dos escravos, com poucos vislumbres de carinho ou amor.
Quis a sua pouca sorte que uma dentada de cão raivoso ditasse o seu futuro e a atirasse nas malhas da ignorância. Não foi a raiva felina que a derrotou, foi a intolerância de quem a devia ter defendido. Apavorada pela perseguição reage da única forma possível:dissimula o medo com selvajaria e dá razão a quem a acusa. Não fossem as contrariedades do destino, e a
...more
Chris
I don't regret having delayed completing Of Love and Other Demons for several years as I don't think I would have appreciated this novella half of much when I first started. My impression then was that this was a slow-moving story with much description but little happening. How wrong I was!

The title is so apt as this is an exploration of how obsessions can take precedence over basic humanity. The enigma that is Sierva Maria is the catalyst for upheaval in a coastal Colombian town (a fictionalise
...more
Marina
Gabo, your death marked the end of the magic on this planet...

Who wants to live forever is a tricky question, but if we had to choose one man who would never meet his creator, I am sure we, the book lovers all over the world would have picked you, unanimously.

What am I going to do when I will read all of your lines? Re-read them? Re-live them?
Love... The never ending source of your inspiration.
Love can drive you mad, but, we all know that we will never survive in this world unless we get a lit
...more
Alexia
Aug 13, 2007 Alexia rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: dreamers
Almost a fairytale, this book is an incredible bed time story. Makes you wonder if Garcia Marquez was told this story by his Grandmother or another elder woman in his village. It is dark and sad and ultimately love becomes a demon. A demon that you can't live with or without. Despite it's depressing denouement Garcia Marquez is one of my favorite writers for his lyrical and romantic sense of plot. The barriers between the living and the dead are sheer at best and the extreme power and control of ...more
Ali Reda
The last 30 pages changed my opinion completely. Instead of giving it 2 stars, I gave it 4. The improbable and impossible love, in which obsession acts as a demonic possession causing insanity in those involved, however from the darkness of madness, beauty emerges that haunts you forever.
Pina Varriale
Un piccolo capolavoro di un grande della letteratura.
Jake
Freshman year in high school we were assigned Marquez's "No One Writes to the Colonel", which was not exactly an easy read (a description from Wikipedia: "the story of an impoverished, retired colonel, a veteran of the Thousand Days War, who still hopes to receive the pension he was promised some fifteen years earlier.") The experience turned me off to reading Marquez until I was forced to read "100 Years of Solitude" a few years later. It's too bad "Of Love and Other Demons" wasn't available ba ...more
Shane
Garcia Marquez has the remarkable ability to take the reader into a surreal world where the decaying remnants of empire, the suffocation of religion, superstition, prejudice and the underbelly of human existence replete with bodily emissions and odours are laid bare. He also reveals the consequences of living in a world without love.

In this book, based on a discovery he reported on as a young journalist, of a 200 year-old skeleton with a growing head of copper coloured hair discovered in an old
...more
Christina Wilder
Take the disturbing tale of Lolita, add in the spiritual soul-searching of The Bridge of San Luis Rey, the horror of The Exorcist, as well as gorgeous prose, and you have this book.

A man abandons his lover for another woman, who is struck by a lightning bolt and killed. His scorned lover, who used to communicate to him by way of leaving notes in paper folded into the shape of birds and left in a nearby tree, leaves "a storm" of paper birds, all written with the ominous message "That lightening
...more
Maya
Jul 18, 2007 Maya rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone and everyone!
this is my favorite book of all time. i really like marquez and how he mixes the fantastic with everyday life. it's like he and his characters are from another planet... one that's very similar to earth, but just a bit off. like a planet you'd find on an episode of sliders. (i feel that recently i've been using sliders to describe a lot of things...)

anyway, i can read this book over and over. it's been a while since i read it so i would feel silly giving it a comprehensive review here, but maybe
...more
Swetha
There have been times when I have mulled over the likelihood of there being a decrease in the propensity to take pleasure in reading an author as you keep reading his works. It has happened to me previously with other authors because their writing style became so straightforwardly predictable. To a certain extent, I remained resolute in my opinion that authors like Gabo would not join the list even though his characters are mad as The Hatter and his profound love stories involve a touch of magic ...more
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Gabriel José de la Concordia García Márquez was a Colombian novelist, short-story writer, screenwriter and journalist. García Márquez, familiarly known as "Gabo" in his native country, was considered one of the most significant authors of the 20th century. In 1982, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.

He studied at the University of Bogotá and late worked as a reporter for the Colombian ne
...more
More about Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez...
One Hundred Years of Solitude Love in the Time of Cholera Chronicle of a Death Foretold Memories of My Melancholy Whores No One Writes to the Colonel and Other Stories

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“Do not allow me to forget you” 316 likes
“Crazy people are not crazy if one accepts their reasoning.” 206 likes
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