oriana's Reviews > 62: A Model Kit

62 by Julio Cortázar
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Sep 17, 14

bookshelves: perennialfavorites, phenomenal, read-2010, read-2011, read-2012, read-2013, dabbling
read count: 5

I'm reading this again, for IDK like the 10th time. It's always always worth spending some time with the most astonishing, slippery, shivery, fantastic book of all time ever.

This book is magic, magic, magic; on every page, in every line, shot through every twistedly long and nearly un-parse-able sentence. One day I will meet someone who loves this as much as I do, and we will read it back and forth, bit by bit, over and over every day for the rest our lives.

I also realized that my next tattoo is going to be a little cute basilisk in Cortázar's honor.
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Reading Progress

11/12/2013 marked as: dabbling

Comments (showing 1-19 of 19) (19 new)

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message 1: by Tosh (new)

Tosh Oriana it looks like I have to read this book. In fact I may have it already. I have a box of New Directions I haven't read yet.


oriana Tosh, I am so excited to hear what you will have to say about this book! Have you read Cortazar before? Because possibly this is his hardest book to read, but also oh my god his most amazing (not that I'm dissing Hopscotch). I will admit that I've read it maybe five times, and the first two were right in a row.


message 3: by Tosh (new)

Tosh Oriana this sounds like a challenge! I better read it. If I don't you will think I a total s**t! I have to check my inventory. Due to long story I won't go into it, but I think I requested this book from New Directions. If I do have it I will read it.

Due to my obsessive British 60's thing, I know Cortazar's work via "Blow Up." But strange enough (or not that strange) a girl friend of mine who is also on this list, is crazy about Cortazar's work. I did read 'Blow Up" and Hopscotch in the 80's when I was ill in bed - and I don't have a memory of it! I think due to my flu at the time. But Oriana I am turned on that you like this book so much - so I wlll locate it and will read the damn devil.


oriana Tosh that is awesome! A very dear friend of mine got me into Cortazar, who I maybe never would have read otherwise, and it seismically shifted my literary life. I would be thrilled to be able to continue that chain...

(Also how cool are you that you can just request books from New Directions?)

Probably I should also mention that most people think his short stories are better than his novels. But also most people are silly and don't know anything.

But goodness, trying to read Hopscotch while you had the flu? I can't even imagine.


oriana Oh and come on. You'd have to try a lot harder than that to make me think you were a shit!


oriana Gosh Robert, I'm thrilled to provide the nudge. If I can start a little fire here of people reading Cortazar, especiall 62: A Model Kit, I will be immeasurably pleased. Ah, the powers of teh internets!


message 7: by Tosh (new)

Tosh Robert I know this website. And yeah his graphics and book covers are great. I am totally interested in book cover graphics as well as layouts on pages, etc. You are going to see more of that stuff on my press (TamTam Books).

Oriana it has been reported that I am s**t, but nevertheless even in the gutter I have faced the stars...


message 8: by Magdelanye (new) - added it

Magdelanye It just so happens I am on a Cortazar binge with a nice little stockpile of his work...this one tho I had to put a hold on,someone has it for another week. That's okay because I am having so much fun withCronopios and Famasand the literary bio

Cortazar might have died,long live Cortazar!


oriana Long live Cortazar indeed!!! Have you read Autonauts of the Cosmoroute? I only recommend it for people who already love him, but for those who do, it is utterly magical.


message 10: by Magdelanye (new) - added it

Magdelanye Had to put a hold on that one too,but picked it up just yesterday. I have peeked but plan to read it after a few more fictiones.
And I must confess,gemini that I am, I am also right now reading that other hero of mine,China Mieville,punkster with a lot in common with the great JC, both wildly experimental,seamlessly juxtaposing the real and the totally bizarre and careful of every word.
i am reading Railsea and trying to catch up to my Mieville group.


oriana Gosh, I never had any particular inclination to read Mieville. But you say he's like Cortazar??


message 12: by Magdelanye (new) - added it

Magdelanye well,I'm not quoting anyone,but to me,the similariies are manifold.They share a passion for language, and for the fantastic and the absurd,which they both treat casually;and both are geniuses of observation,exploringing the unusual nature of the ordinary.It is easy to read parables in most of their works. Not beligerantly political,their works are quite revolutionary,and both are splendid,hypnotic,playful writers.Their characters are inhabited with insight and compassion,and gentleness,mostly,even though both of them have written some pretty dark stuff,especially CM.They write not just about but from the far side of reality where things appear distorted and unfamiliar,the attic and the basement,with a marvelous lucidity and eridition that is inventive and seductive. We want to join in.

Reading them together like this may not be such a great idea,for once or twice,as I read myself to sleep,I have gotten mixed up as to where I read a certain phrase or idea, and bits easily conflate...


oriana Wow!! I am totally convinced, thank you. Which Mieville would you recommend starting with?


message 14: by Magdelanye (new) - added it

Magdelanye oriana wrote: "Wow!! I am totally convinced, thank you. Which Mieville would you recommend starting with?"

Perdido Street Station


oriana Onto the to-read shelf it goes!!


message 16: by Magdelanye (new) - added it

Magdelanye oriana wrote: "Onto the to-read shelf it goes!!"

Just dont let it languish there too long!
CM is someone whose work you want to be exploring.
I am very interested in your reaction,you will let me know.

Yesterday I started winners. It's very different,quite a sleeper, but finally finished the prologue and am gratified to note it's getting more interesting.Have you read this one?


oriana I didn't love Winners, I have to admit. I've read all his books, I think, though many (including that one) only once.


message 18: by Gabriela (new) - added it

Gabriela Hi there - do you think this would be a good book to start my Cortázar experience? Or would you recommend something else for the Cortazár beginners?


oriana Hey Gabriela -- I'd have to say no. This book is really pretty difficult; I had to read it twice through the first time to even begin to parse it, and I think you have to already know you love him to be willing to put in that kind of effort. Most people prefer his short stories, and although I love his novels much more, I think it's probably wise to ease in, maybe with Blow-Up (his most famous) or Chronopios & Famas (shorter and quirkier) or We Love Glenda So Much, which is two collections put together and so has a lot of wonderful stories but also a lot of filler, but would give a good overview to his oeuvre.


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