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A House in the Country

4.09  ·  Rating Details ·  271 Ratings  ·  28 Reviews
Games turn to nightmares during the summer holidays at the magnificent Chilean country estate of the Ventura family when the children - 33 cousins ranging in age from 6 to 16 - are left to themselves while their parents pursue their own pastimes. (Nancy Pearl)
Paperback, 352 pages
Published April 12th 1985 by Vintage (first published 1978)
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(showing 1-30)
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Jonathan
Nov 23, 2016 Jonathan rated it really liked it
Very good indeed. Explicitly meta in a way that occasionally reminded me of Robert Coover, though the prose and the allegory and the brutality were closer to Angela Carter. Occasionally a little on the nose with its critique, but a great read.
J.I.
May 05, 2011 J.I. added it
Shelves: read-2011
To say that this novel is disturbing is to sell it far, far short. It is beyond disturbing, the culmination of incest and canabalism, murder and conspiracy. It has a day that is a year, a library of books representing all of the world's knowledge in which all of the books are covers, entirely blank inside.

This is a novel about the history of Chile, about dictatorship, oppression, the struggle between the ruling class and the peasants, of foriegn intervention, of deceit, lies, racism and death.
...more
Eliana Rivero
Nov 05, 2013 Eliana Rivero rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
La penumbra, por definición, tiene el carácter relativo y transitorio de los estados intermedios puesto que proviene de, o devendrá, o se define en relación a la luz y a la sombra. Las tinieblas, en cambio, poseen un implacable carácter de cosa permanente y sin matices, independiente del tiempo, parte de la eternidad y especificamente de la eternidad maldita... (p.348).

Una historia casi inenarrable, con una trama complicada y unos personajes complejos y repugnantes. Aunque el narrador se empeña
...more
Natacha Martins
Apr 28, 2015 Natacha Martins rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
Não me recordo como foi que este livro acabou nas estantes aqui de casa. Gostei da capa, do preço mas principalmente acho que gostei da comparação com a obra máxima de William Golding, "O Deus das Moscas", e com o facto de ser um autor sul-americano. :)

"Casa de Campo" é uma metáfora ao Chile de Pinochet e Salvador Allende. José Donoso, procurou de forma metafórica, recriar nesta história uma parte da história do Chile, da sociedade chilena e da forma como se viveram os anos da ditadura de Pinoch
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Tiffany Funk
Mar 06, 2007 Tiffany Funk rated it it was amazing
Brutal. This book is brutal.
Tony
Dec 22, 2011 Tony rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A HOUSE IN THE COUNTRY. (1978; Eng. trans. 1984). Jose Donoso. ****.
Born in 1924 in Santiago, Chile, Donoso was primarily a political writer. This novel is no exception. Although not didactic, it manages to convey the class struggle going on in his native Chile between two dictatorial regimes. This is the only one of his novels I have read so far. He is better known for his earlier novel, “The Obscene Bird of Night.” I came across Donoso’s name in a recent biography I read about Kurt Vonnegut.
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GoldGato
Aug 16, 2012 GoldGato rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, winter
This was a book I picked up many years ago because of the cover (Keith Sheridan gets a shout out for the design). Aventura trade editions are always such cool books that I didn't realize I had been duped into reading a fantastical tale of a 19th Century family obsessed with some really heavy...doings.

The South America country is un-named, but yeah, it's Chile and Donoso is writing to portray Pinochet's reign. Latin American literature of the last decades of the 20th Century always has the experi
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Lynda
Impressive and original.
Jason
Mar 26, 2014 Jason rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dense & disturbing
Fel P
May 28, 2017 Fel P rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hacer de la familia ampliada una alegoría del incesto y la degradación moral es, probablemente, una de las cosas que Donoso sabe hacer mejor. En esta novela el ejercicio es llevado a alturas insospechadas. No es un texto sencillo, pero es uno que termina premiando con creces el esfuerzo del lector.
Foteini
Nov 14, 2016 Foteini rated it really liked it
An extraorninary book that reads on many levels. What I really enjoyed is the very strong presence of the author/narrator.
Carlos Manzano
Mar 08, 2013 Carlos Manzano rated it really liked it
Yo me inicié en la literatura (que no en la lectura) con el boom latinoamericano. Entonces comencé a leer casi compulsivamente a García Márquez, Vargas Llosa, Cortázar o Asturias. Más tarde fui ampliando el abanico hasta llegar a todas las latitudes (o casi) del planeta. Sin embargo, no descubrí a José Donoso hasta tiempo después, y fue gracias a esta novela, Casa de campo, que en el fondo me marcó más que ninguna otra del boom, quizá porque mi bagaje literario, más vasto, me permitió enfrentarm ...more
Pablo Guzmán
Dec 01, 2013 Pablo Guzmán rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Una novela grandiosa de un autor impresionante. Intrigante, densa, grotesca, profundamente alegórica (?), Casa de campo es seguramente de lo mejor que he leído. Pese a que no he leído mucha narrativa nacional, me atrevería a decir que si los norteamericanos tienen una Great American Novel, la Gran Novela Chilena bien podría ser esta.
Joanne Gass
Aug 27, 2014 Joanne Gass rated it it was amazing
This is a classic from one of the Boom generation. Donoso reportedly wrote this after the coup which felled Allende and put Pinochet in power in Chile. It's a fable of both the Spanish conquest of the New World and the more recent history of Chile. Perhaps he played too much with author intrusion, but I enjoyed the novel with all its quirkiness.
David
I enjoyed the first half of the book but felt betrayed by the deus ex machina that the authors uses at the start of part II. (view spoiler)
Juan Cristóbal
Nov 11, 2009 Juan Cristóbal rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. José Donoso writes beautifully. Unlike many who say that this is a critical view about Pinochet's dictatorship, I think Donoso looks deeper into the chilean society. He is actually painting a portrait about chilean elite, and how the land reform affected it.
Fredoviola
Sep 27, 2007 Fredoviola rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone interested in imaginative fiction
Another very strange book. To me his writing is a cross between Celine, Genet and Twain! A very strange combo indeed. This is a kind of magical realism very different from Marquez and Cortazar, a bit more akin to Borges.
Vero
Jul 03, 2014 Vero rated it did not like it
Estaba rarísimo, la verdad es que será que yo soy muy tonta, pero tuve que leer en wikipedia la interpretación.
Lo que sí me gustó mucho fueron los nombres de los personajes.
Guillermo
Aug 16, 2012 Guillermo rated it it was amazing


La versión original en español. Es la mejor metáfora de la dictadura chilena.
Feña
retrato de la sociedad, sobre todo de la aristocracia chilena en el siglo IXX (creo).
drama con rivetes oscuros, kilos de intriga y toneladas de secretos.
Anita
Dec 15, 2010 Anita rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent read.
Erika
Jul 24, 2014 Erika rated it really liked it
Sórdido y cautivador. La historia se desarrolla en base a la hipocresía y crudeza de sus personajes. A mi opinión, una metáfora de la naturaleza humana.
Marcel Dekker
Mar 10, 2013 Marcel Dekker rated it really liked it
Shelves: nederlands
Great allegorical book about the overthrow of the Allende government by the military regime of Pinochet.
K H
Jun 19, 2007 K H rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lit
One of the best books ever. Complicated, allegorical, farcical. About colonization, South America, Europe, class and indigenous peoples.
Hugo
Apr 21, 2013 Hugo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Junio 2000.
Debe ser entretenido, porque no acostumbro a leer libros de tantas páginas.
Consuelo
Feb 08, 2011 Consuelo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Maravilloso. Tendré que leerlo unas cien veces para entenderlo completo, eso sí.
Samir Muñoz
Samir Muñoz rated it it was amazing
Oct 27, 2011
Saladehistoria
Saladehistoria rated it really liked it
Jul 18, 2015
Emily
Emily rated it really liked it
May 23, 2012
María
María rated it it was ok
Apr 16, 2017
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José Donoso Yáñez was a Chilean writer. He lived most of his life in Chile, although he spent some years in self-imposed exile in Mexico, the United States (Iowa) and Spain. After 1973, he claimed his exile was a form of protest against the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet.

Donoso is the author of a number of remarkable stories and novels, which contributed greatly to the Latin American literary bo
...more
More about José Donoso...

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