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This I Believe: An A to Z of a Life

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  244 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
In this masterly, deeply personal, and provocative book, the internationally renowned Mexican writer Carlos Fuentes, whose work has been called “a combination of Poe, Baudelaire, and Isak Dinesen” (Newsweek), steps back to survey the wellsprings of art and ideology, the events that have shaped our time, and his extraordinary life and fiercest passions.

Arranged alphabetical
ebook, 0 pages
Published December 18th 2007 by Random House (first published 2002)
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Jay Green
Bought this in a second-hand store so not too much money wasted. I'd forgotten how tiresomely liberal-elitist Fuentes can be, although I say that as an avowed anarchist-communist. The mandarin tone, the unnecessarily obtuse language, the attempt to (re)claim Bunuel for religiosity. Ugh. I enjoyed Myself with Others very much but found The Old Gringo and Artemio Cruz both slow and opaque; they should have been a warning. Fuentes is no philosopher, and as a raconteur he'd soon have you snoozing ov ...more
David Sasaki
I left my Kindle on the plane and it was never found. Very annoying. So three-quarters the way through Jonathan Franzen's Freedom I scanned my grandmother's bookshelf and settled on Carlos Fuentes' This I Believe, a collection of thirty or so essays arranged alphabetically.

The essays cover everything from love to Buñuel, from civil society to sex. I hate to admit impatience with such a well regarded intellectual just months after his death, but there are times when you feel like you're the audi
Bookmarks Magazine

While critics praised the depth and breadth of Fuentes's thinking, most acknowledged that This I Believe is a work for the serious reader, someone who has already considered deeply philosophical issues. At all turns, Fuentes challenges his readers__not only with personal inquiries into marriage, but also with forays into political topics including globalization and civic society. Many reviewers cited the essay titled "Urbanities," which recalls the distinctive roles cities played in Fuentes's li

May 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Una especie de Autobiografía de Fuentes, donde nos cuenta su abecedario personal, como bien dice el titulo en qué cree, en la política lo económico lo social, en el arte, cine pintura y literatura, explora con su gran cultura y elocuencia a grandes Filosofos y Novelistas, pasa de Platon a Wittgenstein dando vueltas por Nietzsche quien parece ser una gran influencia en el, de Sofocles a Kundera deteniéndose continuamente a hablar de Balzac o Borges, nos narra sus experiencias personales también, ...more
Oct 29, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book makes my heart swell with an insurmountable amount of happiness that only childhood birthdays, lovers' vacations and nostalgic Sunday mornings can bring.
Giuseppe Sirugo
Jul 06, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gsesro
Sentire menzionare il nome di Carlos Fuentes (Panamá, 11 novembre 1928 – Città del Messico, 15 maggio 2012) rimembro gli anni dal 2002 al 2004. E alla mente mi affiora un soggetto radicato alle proprie origini messicane. Un ex scrittore che nonostante per studio, esigenze di vita, capacità didattiche, ecc, abbia dovuto emigrare e formalmente riuscì a trovare il giusto temperamento in un paese dove cultura e tradizioni sono unite dal solo idioma.
Come molti narratori era affascinato da William Fa
Farhan Khalid

A couple begins to know each other

Everything is surprise

Sometimes love yearns to recover the wonder of its earliest moment but inevitably comes to realize the second time around the wonder is nothing more than nostalgia

There is always someone who will say that the greatest moment of love is separation

Extreme attention is the creative faculty, and its condition is love

How can one single person assume responsibility for everyone?

This is the central theme of all Dostoevsky’s novels

Critics rep
Joana Costa

Carlos Fuentes percorre de A a Z os temas que o definem. Talvez por gostar de saber o que outros pensam, tenha gostado deste livro.
Gostei particularmente de "globalização", "história", "ibero-américa" e "leitura".

Frases que ficaram:

"Eu amo-a porque eu sou o homem mais pontual da terra e ela, pontualmente, chega sempre tarde."

"A esquerda saudosa do que já não foi não pode ser uma esquerda construtiva do que deve ser."

"Mas uma catástrofe, diz María Zambrano, só é catastrófica se dela não nascer na
Izzy G
Aug 04, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Really smart people
Shelves: ifyouhavetime
I really enjoy Fuentes. However... I'm not sure if the intent of this book was to elevate the discourse to the stratoshpere so that it would be out of the reach of a humble reader. Because it sure seemed like it at times. Either that or I read it during a time when the bong residue began to accumulate in my parietal lobe. In any case, some parts make you feel wholly inadequate but in others you are right there with him saying "I feel you Carlos". Overall, definitely worth the read. Organized int ...more
Denisse Comte
Sep 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Este libro es básicamente un recorrido extenso a través de la mente de Carlos Fuentes. Experimentar en estas pequeñas lecturas su opinión sobre variados temas, así como algunos de esos recuerdos trascendentales para el autor. Una lectura rica en lenguaje y llena de contenidos interesantes. Desde la globalización hasta sus autores favoritos, pasando por temas como amor y amistad. Increíble, si deseamos verdaderamente entrelazarnos con la verdadera imagen de Fuentes, este es el libro. Mas que una ...more
Jul 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mexican-lit
I read this book while in Mexico and it rang true to what Fuentes has seen over the years. I may not always agree with what he believes, but his sense of dignity about living in Mexico ( he wasn't born in Mexico but spent most of his life there) shines in this book. he is also a world traveller with homes outside of Mexico and he enlightens us on these places. great read.
Dec 19, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I read this in the original Spanish at the recommendation of a friend. While on occasion Fuentes would share something interesting, for the most part I just didn't care about his opinion. His main purpose seemed to be convincing his reader that he was well-read and wise.

Content aside though, reading this book was good for my Spanish.
Estela Anders
Feb 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What an incredible glimpse into the mind of an incredible man. This book made me want to go and find every Carlos Fuentes book I have not yet read (I have had less luck finding Luis Buñuel's movies, but Mr. Fuentes inspired me too). What a beautiful mind.
Ruth Flores
Oct 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Una especie de autobiografía narrada de la A a la Z con palabras importantes para Fuentes y el significado de las mismas, el libro llegó a mis manos como un préstamo y hoy lo tengo de cabecera. Hermoso.
Feb 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read the English translation version of the book.

I am once again blown away by just how much knowledge Carlos Fuentes possessed. He was incurably well-read and could certainly go in-depth analysis on what he knew. Incredible.
Daniel Guzman
Un buen compendio de ensayos que incluye una variedad de temas al estilo de Gibran, un libro muy bello, ilustra la claridad del autor, aquella que creo solo se obtiene en el ocaso de la vida, ahí cuando la contemplación constituye la escénica misma.
Aug 17, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
this is like sitting with fuentes over a week's time at a cafe and drinking too many wines and coffees, but he just won't stop talking and you can't help but hang on his every word and try to get one in edgewise every once in a while, just to goad him to a new topic.
Carlos Fuentes is a writer of a lot of wisdom. I specially liked what we had to say about love and how it translates into giving full attention to the object or person loved. I liked the way this relates to art making.
Jan 28, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mexico-latin-am
First U.S. Edition.
Irene Abdou
It is a book that is kind of hard to get into but then it gets really interesting and fascinating.
Marili Garcia hernandez
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Apr 07, 2014
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Jan 12, 2013
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Apr 28, 2017
Amy Schuler
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Humberto Plascencia
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Goodreads Librari...: Page Count Correction 3 9 May 01, 2017 01:53AM  
  • Hermit in Paris: Autobiographical Writings
  • Farnood / فرنود
  • Education and the Social Order
  • The Fragrance of the Guava
  • The Battersea Park Road to Paradise
  • On the Meaning of Life
  • Selected Poems
  • Calligraphy of the Witch
  • Deceived With Kindness
  • Essays
  • About Writing: Seven Essays, Four Letters, and Five Interviews
  • The Moths and Other Stories
  • An Age Like This: 1920-1940 (The Collected Essays, Journalism & Letters, Vol. 1)
  • Butterfly Boy: Memories of a Chicano Mariposa
  • Archives du Nord
  • William Morris: Romantic to Revolutionary
  • Dossier K: A Memoir
  • It All Adds Up: From the Dim Past to the Uncertain Future
Carlos Fuentes Macías was a Mexican writer and one of the best-known novelists and essayists of the 20th century in the Spanish-speaking world. Fuentes influenced contemporary Latin American literature, and his works have been widely translated into English and other languages.

Fuentes was born in Panama City, Panama; his parents were Mexican. Due to his father being a diplomat, during his childhoo
More about Carlos Fuentes...

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