Ryan Jones's Reviews > Ficciones

Ficciones by Jorge Luis Borges
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Apr 30, 2009

it was amazing
Read in January, 1991

Reading Borges is a true pleasure, first and foremost. He ranks among the great short story writers of the 20th Century, and one of the most creative of all time.

As a writer, he truly embraces the patrimony of Western literature (and the Eastern literature accepted into it) and revels in it. While being firmly planted in the flow of tradition, its not surprising that he would be accepted by moderns. Indeed, one might think some of his work were Postmodern or Deconstructionist at first.

Though Borges first came to the world's attention sharing an award with Samuel Beckett, that is exactly the kind of writer who couldn't be more dissimilar to him.

Borges would certainly never be modern enough to abandon the concept of plot, quite the opposite: the more Byzantine the better. Borges never fails to entertain us, no matter what else he hopes to suggest.

If you haven't read "The Garden of Forking Paths," you are really missing out. From its classic Edgar Allen Poe-style beginning it will grab you. To give away any more would be unthinkable.

Interesting note- The English translation of "Forking Paths" was first published in English in "Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine." Maybe that's why the finest South American writer never got the Nobel Prize.
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