Saturday, June 21, 2008

One hundred years of solitude

Author: Gabriel Garcia Marquez

The first page of the novel has a family tree and probably when you look at it, your first thought would be - "Huh? Why would I ever need this?!?!". Believe me, you would need to refer it every now and then. For the simple reason that the names of all the characters are made of every possible combination of: Jose, Arcadio, Aureliano, Ursula, Amaranta and so on!!!

Mid-way through the novel I was completely clueless as to which generation we're talking about. There are about 4-5 generations(I told you I don't know!).

Coming to the story: it's about generations of a family spanning, you guessed it, a hundred years. Right from how the first person in the family founded a town to how the last person saw the degradation of the town. How members of the family fell into and out of love; how they spread prosperity and destruction of the town; so on and so forth. The title is very apt: almost every member of the family lives in solitude for most part of his life despite being surrounded by all of his/her family members. Some of the members live so long that you feel gross reading about their condition. The first third of the story is interesting. Maybe I like the first third (yeah I can't say first half!) because it's very positive and constructive. Then the ending is also very interesting. You might as well skip all the pages in between and you wouldn't feel any loss.

Bottomline: An okay read.

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