One Hundred Years of Solitude

One Hundred Years of Solitude

Book - 2006 | First Harper Perennial Modern Classics edition
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Tells the story of the Buendia family, set against the background of the evolution and eventual decadence of a small South American town.
Publisher: New York : Harper Perennial Modern Classics, 2006
1970
Edition: First Harper Perennial Modern Classics edition
ISBN: 9780060883287
0060883286
Branch Call Number: F GARCI-G
Characteristics: 417, 16 pages, genealogical table ; 21 cm
Additional Contributors: Rabassa, Gregory
Alternative Title: Cien años de soledad. English

Opinion

From Library Staff

Gabriel Garcia Marquez is Colombian.


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Kelly0102
Apr 08, 2021

100 years of solitude is exactly what reading this book feels like. So many characters have the same or extremely similar names that it’s difficult to keep them straight in your mind. Relationships are also terribly confused due to incest, remarriages and various people just appearing out of no where and being taken into a family. It is also excruciating that such an uninspired history of a family is also extremely repetitive (and trust me, I get that that is part of its point, history repeating itself, unending struggle between desire for solitude and need for society, blah blah blah). Critics rave about this book, but most reviews by readers say the same thing: unbearable, couldn’t get through it. I can’t help but feel that people who praise it are only doing so because they know it’s supposed to be a literary masterpiece.

w
wyenotgo
Nov 21, 2019

Here we have on one hand the fatalism that Latin America inherited from Catholic Spain and on the other hand sheer whimsy — magical realism taken to extremes. But in the end it becomes a great tragedy: an almost enchanted society, happy and benign in its isolation and its never-ending civil wars, but then destroyed by the arrival of 20th century technology and the brutal impact of the corporate world.
Many readers will share my frustration with Marquez’ bizarre conceit of assigning every succeeding male member of this strange household through four generations with one of two names. It’s as if Marquez was determined to ensure that no one would attempt to actually make sense of this tale — applying a subterfuge that was likely to sow confusion. Indeed, it seems that the personalities of the males also tend to follow a repeating pattern, being variations on either adventurers or seekers of solitude. It’s actually the women who each display unique personalities and each in her way is a disruptive force. Each one of them deserves a chapter of her own: the matriarch Ursula, the mysterious Rebecca who eats dirt and whitewash, the austere, implacable Amaranta, Remedios the Beauty, the lusty and resourceful Pilar Ternera.
But in the end, fate takes charge and after a hundred years, with the arrival of the fruit merchants the precious solitude of the Buendia clan is banished forever. I found myself recalling "Lost Horizon" or perhaps more aptly Lampedusa's "The Leopard" for parallels. This was certainly no paradise but on the other hand, everything that made it special and worth preserving was lost.
The problems with this book are obvious but to a great extent it is saved by the sheer exuberance of its prose, the author’s delight in the magical kingdom he has created; and the outrageously romantic personalities of his many protagonists and their mad exploits. Even death cannot entirely extinguish them and they remain with us to the end.
Truly a unique reading experience.

l
Linyarai
Aug 27, 2019

I read this for the "Set In South America" part of my 2019 reading challenge. I didn't like it, it was a 100 year summary of a family that kept using the same names every generation. I couldn't keep any of the characters straight and it felt like the whole thing was written in one breath.

ArapahoeKate Aug 06, 2019

While this is a challenging read, I believe Gabriel Garcia Marquez pushes us as readers to accept the impossible, think outside our own opinions and perspectives, and better understand the human condition. It took several running starts for me to finish the book, but overall was swept away by the authors writing and the overarching story of the magical and mythical Macondo.

j
jmreid1220
Jun 27, 2019

Yes, I can understand why this is so critically acclaimed. yes, indeed. This book is beautifully written and it certainly stretches your imagination.

That being said, this was a bit of a slog and I felt a strong need to "power through" until the end. Of the classics I've read (thus far), this has been one of the biggest challenges. Such is the nature of classics from time to time.

m
MyTake
Jun 20, 2019

I tried to like it, even invested the time to read 300 of its 400 pages. Despite liking its prose, I opted not to finish the last 100 pages. My frustrations included its HUGE cast of characters, endlessly repeating names held by multiple characters, minimal description of some important situations (yet many unimportant situations were described), and ultimately not connecting with any character enough to see their journey to the end of the story. While I would read a different Marquez book, I cannot recommend this one.

AnaGM May 22, 2019

Awesome, a wonderful masterpiece. Marquez is a master storyteller.

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Anita_Dickey
Apr 18, 2019

i read this book to fulfil the goal read a book that was written by an author from aisa, africa or south america. (it is also on the 300 books everyone should read at least once challenge on listopia) at first i wasn't sure i liked it. it reads like someone's geneology with the same names used over multiple generations. i'm still not sure when one of the characters actually died. they were there and then they weren't like i skipped a page but couldn't be bothered to go back an reread. the ending was good though. it finally made sence sort of. i'm glad i read it once. will be happy to never read it again.

a
andycg
Feb 17, 2019

I prefer Love in the Time of Cholera and Strange Pilgrims. An interesting read, but a little to ADD for me.

f
fionajay
Oct 07, 2018

Recently banned in Kuwait...

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Dragonrat703
Jul 07, 2017

Sexual Content: A whole bunch of incest and prostitution, mostly with very young people

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Dragonrat703
Jul 07, 2017

Violence: More than three thousand people are shot and their bodies are dumped into the sea

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vv19
Jan 09, 2016

Sexual Content: Incest

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Dragonrat703
Jul 07, 2017

Dragonrat703 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

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VladTheGreen
Oct 16, 2015

VladTheGreen thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

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Dragonrat703
Jul 07, 2017

The history of a fictional town spanning one hundred years and following six generations through life

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blatz911
Oct 21, 2014

He went among the houses for several days repeating the demonstration of levitation by means of chocolate while the acolyte collected so much money in a bag that in less than a month he began the construction of the church.

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