Tomorrow in the Battle Think on Me
From "the most subtle and gifted writer in contemporary Spanish literature" (Boston Globe), a riveting novel of infidelity and a man trapped by a terrible secret.
"No one ever suspects," begins Tomorrow in the Battle Think On Me, "that they might one day find themselves with a dead woman in their arms.... Marta has just met Victor when she invites him to dinner at her Madr...more
Death is inevitable. From the very first page of Javier Marías’ flawlessly executed novel ‘Tomorrow In the Battle Think On Me’, death becomes a constant companion to the reader, always whispering in our ear the truths of our impermanence and the endless variety of possible deaths that await us – horrible deaths, ridiculous deaths, death that may make a stranger laugh when they read it in the paper. ‘Any dead life las...more
Incredible! In-freakin’-credible.! This is one of those titles you want to recommend to everyone, but you know damned well that it isn’t going to be everyone’s cup of tea—one of those novels that folds up on itself into something origami-like—a piece of paper manipulated into a work of art something like this: even if your own look more like this: ( my paper birds have wings that flap)
Why do you read? Why do you read what you read? When you pick up a novel for the first time, do you think ‘thi...more
Everything is travelling towards its own dissolution and is lost and few things leave any trace, especially if they are never repeated, if they happen only once and never recur, the same happens with those things that install themselves too comfortably and recur day after day, again and again, they leave no trace either.The writing of Javier Marias is a different case altogether. Repetition and recurrence are common aspects of his books * and yet they always leave an everlasting trace on reade...more
The act of telling a story takes up time, it prolongs time and, in doing so, prolongs life.
It preserves memories while we are alive, but it can also preserve them beyond our death.
Paradoxically, story-telling might even help us to accept death.
As Marias’ protagonist, Victor, says:
"I can tell the story and I can therefore explain the transition from life to death, which is a way of both prolonging that life and accepting that death."
Expecting to Reign
Victor’s story s...more
I told this to the owner of the bookstore, it was of course empty.
You are the second person to complain. The first was much younger than you. More my age.
You have not read the book, I asked as he sat at the edge of a table mostly emptied. He shook his head. Then, that would explain it, I would like my money returned.
But I no longer have a book that I bought here.
O.K. It begins with a dead woman in the narrator's arms. He will remember her...more
Marías talks about deat...more
Morpheus sister from the Sandman series reminds us at one point (in Brief Lives I think) that we all know how every story ends. We just tell ourselves we don't to make it all bearable. She is the avatar of Death, so I guess she knows what she's talking about. Javier Marias protagonist of this here story has all the pretending stripped off from his life when a casual romantic encounter ends with the woman dead in his arms. He becomes obsessed not so much with the fragility of existence, but wit...more
Marcel Proust Albertine disparue.
Time and Death are the two preoccupations of this intricate and profound novel.
"Someone is dressing up for death today, a change of skirt or tie
eating a final feast of buttered sliced pan, tea"
Dennis O' Driscoll Someone.
(Full poem here: http://dennisodriscoll.com/poetry/som...)
This death - the death w...more
Quando Dio distribuiva il permesso di scrivere romanzi con frasi lunghissime senza far cascare il latte alle ginocchia, in fila non c’era solo Saramago. Con lui c’era anche Marìas.
Quindi, superato lo sgomento,dovuto alla prospettiva che ci sia, non uno, ma almeno due scrittori, nei confronti dei quali, dovete armarvi di santa pazienza, leggere con calma, tornare indietro se occorre, puntare il ditino sulla parola esatta, ogni volta che a...more
The narrator is a ghostwriter, who ghosts for another ghostwriter, and he is often invisible or strives to d...more
most great books--the vast majority, i'd say--are intermittently brilliant by necessity....more
A few months ago, I tasted those vegetarian cabbage rolls for the first time and concluded that they were the most delicious thing I'd ever had in my life. Being as I am, I became completely obsessed and started making long, sweaty treks through the Miami humidity to fetch them, especially once I realized I didn'...more
It took up residence inside my head, even when I wasn't reading it (and it's still there) in much the same way as The Good Soldier and The Sense of an Ending, all first-person narratives told by a man, did. (I've been trying to think of a first-person female narrator that has engaged me in the same way, but so far I haven't come...more
Non c'è punto, né esclamativo, né interrogativo, neanche quello semplice. Non c'è full stop.
Dio mio, e il bambino, dice Marta che sta morendo tra le braccia di uno sconosciuto, uno che si è portata in casa per una possibile avventura, una distrazione mentre il marito è lontano, una banale scopata, Dio mio e il bambino, dice pensando al figlioletto di due anni che rimarrà solo con quello sconosciuto mentre il padre è in viag...more
There are 300 words in the opening sentence of TOMORROW IN THE BATTLE THINK ON ME that set up a situation for the narrator that simply begs reading to the conclusion on the last page.
Highest Recommendation! FAVORITE
The narrator/protagonist writes, “I’m a passive kind of person who almost nev...more
It was my good fortune to be notified today by my local library that the book I had requested had been delivered to my branch and was available for me to pick up at my earliest convenience. The timing came at no better instant of my day as I was to complete within the hour my first full exposure to the work of Javier Marías. I confess to anyone considering what I might have to say on this matter that the reading of Tomorrow in the Battle Think on Me took m...more
So we have intersecting people, these and more. But the husband's story, as teeming as the first, awaits.
There are some annoying moments in between, especially Victor's creepy habit of following women. And how could a...more
Periodi infiniti e sorprendenti, intuizioni mai banali, allusioni e personaggi dolenti; una scrittura complessa, indubbiamente, con molte divagazioni ma è un libro da non perdere perché qui c’è la vita che altro non è che un gioco di specchi, un alone di nebbia che nasconde, deforma e lascia solo intravedere e mai vedere, e l’animo umano...more
Nella post-fazione, che l'autore chiama inspiegabilmente (ma anche inevitabilmente) Epilogo, Marias ricorda che il romanzo, attuale forma dominante della produzione letteraria, è in voga ormai da...more
More importantly, the themes of YFT (i.e., our continual attempts to 'know' people despite the fact that they will always sl...more
It’s also interesting that a screenwriter (the narrator) employs little d...more
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