Brian's Reviews > Living to Tell the Tale

Living to Tell the Tale by Gabriel García Márquez
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's review
Aug 05, 2011

really liked it

This is the first in the trilogy of Gabriel Garcia Marquez's autobiography. I found it entertaining and informative about the early life of the Nobel Prize winners life in Columbia. I do recommend, for those of you without a working knowledge of Columbian geography, that an Atlas is helpful in understanding his movements as a teen. One thing I really like about Marquez, and which now I realize is a Latin American cultural trait, is the matter of fact treatment and weaving of the supernatural into the overall narrative, which in this case is a simple nonfiction story of his life.

There are a few things here that really stood out to me. First the story of a young writer finding his own voice and style was very insightful. This was done against a backdrop of civil war and brutal regimes in Columbia at the time, which are central to the story, as Gabo (as he was called in the book) was a reporter for several news publications early in his career. Lastly, I have always found his style intersting, and some of his most off hand comments around his particular set of rules I found interesting. (One such gem, GGM never used the "mente" prefix in his writing, the English equivalent of "ly" as he considered it lazy.)

All in all it was a fascinating view into the various influences: familial, political, socioeconomic, and artistic, upon one of this centuries most important authors.

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