Monday, December 8, 2008


Being an advocate of child protection, I was, of course, appalled by the theme of this book. There is nothing appealing about this unusual, or more like bizaare romance, if you can call it that, between a ninety year old man and a 14-year old virgin. Yes, worse than the age disparity between Lolita and Humbert Humbert.

The attraction to the book was the size. I was behind on my 2-book a month target and this one with its 115 pages offered a way for me to catch up. This, however, is not a lightweight by literary standards. Excellent writing as is always the case for Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Of course, I always wonder about works translated from another language. Much praise should go to Edith Grossman -- I wonder why if she can use the English language the way she does, why she does not write a book herself.

Back to Marquez. This book proves what a remarkable writer he is. As he writes from the point of view of the ninety year old man, you get to see life the way he does, rejoice, obsess, fear, grieve, panic and go through all the crazy emotions of being in love with him, and for a moment, for 115 pages, suspend judgment and forget how perverse his desires really are.

To recap: iffy subject, remarkable writing, i'm back on target on my 24-books for 2008 goal.