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Distant Star by Roberto Bolaño
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Mar 13, 10

bookshelves: south-american, fiction
Read from January 14 to 15, 2007 — I own a copy, read count: 1

It’s a short time before Pinochet’s military coup in Chile. A university poetry group is joined by an enigmatic student, Carlos Wieder, who soon starts to explore various forms of poetry and meaning of art within the new Nazi parameters. What follows is a strange, sometimes even grotesque and gruesome mixture of poetry and fascism.

The story is narrated through the eyes of one of the students from the same group who is imprisoned shortly after the coup, and then leaves the country for political reasons and lives in different places in Europe, but never completely loses sight of his friends and other members of the group. Not being able to stop himself, he tries to follow Wieder’s twisted paths.

I feel vaguely disappointed by this book. I read Bolano’s _By Night in Chile_, which, even though similar thematically, was more interesting both in style and imagery. The Distant Star is more popular and better known, and for some reason I expected it to be better than By Night, but it wasn’t.
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