Vanessa Baish's Reviews > A Broken Mirror

A Broken Mirror by Mercè Rodoreda
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's review
Oct 02, 2007

really liked it
Read in September, 2007

this slender novel, told in chapters which could stand each as a complete story, describes three generations of a troubled family in barcelona. the women are the most complex characters; each changes, revealing humanity and ferocity.

the novel is written in poetic language (in translation) and moves swiftly, ending just after the spanish civil war. i compare it, hesitantly, to jacob's room by virginia woolf. they share sensual language and a style that includes fragmented narratives, but they are definitely different writers.

merce rodoreda was a catalan writer who fled barcelona before the spanish civil war, and who remained in paris, writing in catalan, until the 1970s when she returned to barcelona.

i give this my highest rating (i can't seem to pass out any 5's yet) and also would recommend la placa del diamante by rodoreda. my understanding is that this novel is part of the catalan literary canon.
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