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A continent conceived by the scum of the earth without a moment of love the children of abductions, rapes, violations, infamous dealings, deceptions, the union of enemies with enemies Father of Magical Realism, a true god of Literature, one of the immortals Gabriel Garcia M rquez doesn t need introductions He is the writer who drew my attention to Latin American Literature Through his work, I fell in love with Colombia, its culture and traditions, with the rich literary world of CentA continent conceived by the scum of the earth without a moment of love the children of abductions, rapes, violations, infamous dealings, deceptions, the union of enemies with enemies Father of Magical Realism, a true god of Literature, one of the immortals Gabriel Garcia M rquez doesn t need introductions He is the writer who drew my attention to Latin American Literature Through his work, I fell in love with Colombia, its culture and traditions, with the rich literary world of Central and South America This collection is oneexample of the impact and wonder of his writing 12 stories 12 pilgrims whose life led them away from their homelands into the old, safe arms of Europe But is it so Can you ever truly leave your birthplace behind The answer is no It is in your blood, your thoughts, your behaviour It haunts your steps, it doesn t let goIt doesn t matter whether you are in Paris, Geneva, Madrid, Barcelona, Naples, Sicily, Rome Your land is inside you Everything else is only a pilgrimageBon Voyage, Mr PresidentA young couple befriends the exiled President of an unnamed Carribean country Initially their purpose isn t exactly honest but what happens when he actually manages to gain their sympathy Set in BarcelonaNo one sang or died of love in the plastic trattories on the Piazza di Spagna For the Rome of our memory was by now another ancient Rome within the ancient Rome of the Caesars Then a voice that might have come from the beyond stopped me cold on a narrow street in Trastevere Hello, Poet The SaintA tender story of a man who has suffered a terrible loss set in Rome, the Eternal City with the immortal beauty, over a sad summer A story of Art, hope andself canonizationSleeping Beauty and the AirplaneA beautiful, heartfelt story of unrequited love at first sight, at Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris M rquez transforms a simple, uneventful meeting into pure ArtI Sell My DreamsAn extraordinary story of a woman who had the ability of prophesying through dreams, set in Havana, Vienna and Barcelona And we get to meet Pablo NerudaLove is eternal for as long as it lasts I Only Came to Use the PhoneA young woman finds herself in an asylum and her real life nightmare begins somewhere in the Spanish desert A harrowing storyThey say this is the country of the Moors , said another, distant voice that resounded throughout the dormitory And it must be true, because in the summer, when there s a moon, you can hear the dogs barking at the sea The Ghosts of AugustA haunted castle in Tuscany is the summer destination of a beautiful family And this is how you scare the bloody daylights out of a reader in just three pagesAt Christmas, coloured lights were strung between the acacias, and music and happy voices were heard from the balconies, and a crowd of tourists invaded the sidewalk caf s, but in the midst of all the festivities one could feel the same repressed tension that preceded the days when the anarchists had taken over the streets Maria dos PrazeresA former prostitute is obsessed with what she perceives to be her impending death A beautiful, sad story in majestic BarcelonaSeventeen Poisoned EnglishmenA woman travels to Naples to see the Pope and witnesses a strange, macabre incident A fascinating mixture of comedy, mystery and dramaTramontanaA story that vaguely reminded me of Chronicle of a Death Foretold BrilliantMiss Forbes s Summer of HappinessTwo children have to spend their vacations under the control of an extremely strict nanny who has a few dark secrets of her own Set in SicilyLight Is Like WaterTwo boys from Cartagena who adore the sea feel trapped in their small apartment in Madrid The solution they come up with in order to learn how to row has tragic resultsShe made her mental calculations, and only then realized that they had passed Bordeaux, as well as Angoul me and Poitiers, and were driving along the flooded dike of the Loire Moonlight filtered through the mist, and the silhouettes of castles through the pines seemed to come from fairy tales The Trail of Your Blood In the SnowA young married couple drives from the Pyrenees to Paris The woman has an almost invisible scratch on her ring finger, but she is bleeding, leaving tears of blood in the snowThis is one of the most beautiful, foreboding stories I ve ever read It shocks you and leaves you empty and in pain Actual, physical pain Gabriel Garcia M rquez writes about exile, despair, loss, shattered hopes, broken families And death His pilgrims are people of all walks of life, their backgrounds varying, their aspirations remaining the same In morbid twists and shocking closures, the reader completes a difficult pilgrimage in the land of the human soul that searches for the unattainable and the pureIt is not true that people stop pursuing dreams because they grow old, they grow old because they stop pursuing dreams Gabriel Garcia M rquez My reviews can also be found on Marquez remains a great writer While not every story in this bundle is equally enjoyable, they all show great mastery and the ability to draw interesting characters in a few lines, a feat in which some writers don t succeed in a whole book.The Dutch translation that I read, had a horrible title The poetical Spanish title Doce Cuentos Peregrinos, Twelve Pilgrim Stories fitted exactly, because there are 12 stories, the rough drafts have traveled with Marquez to the different places where he li Marquez remains a great writer While not every story in this bundle is equally enjoyable, they all show great mastery and the ability to draw interesting characters in a few lines, a feat in which some writers don t succeed in a whole book.The Dutch translation that I read, had a horrible title The poetical Spanish title Doce Cuentos Peregrinos, Twelve Pilgrim Stories fitted exactly, because there are 12 stories, the rough drafts have traveled with Marquez to the different places where he lived and the stories are set at distant locations throughout Europe and Middle America In Dutch they called this bundle The Lucky Summer of Mrs Forbes , which is the title of just one of the stories and certainly not the best, and has no bearing whatsoever on the general content Why No idea.Anyway, most stories are pleasant to read just because of the great diction One I liked best was I only came to make a call It is about a middle aged woman on her way to Barcelona, who enters a large and remote building to telephone her husband that she will be home a little later Unfortunately, it turns out to be a mental institution for women and they mistake her for a new inmate All attempts at escape are blocked by remorseless nurses Together with the description of pure misery, Marquez manages to slip humour into this passage about this most heavily built nurse My apologies for the bad translation, it went from Spanish to Dutch into English, I ll just try to get it as close as possible One look at her face sufficed to know that implorations would have no effect on the obsessed woman in uniform who, because of her incredible strength, was called Herculina She was responsible for the difficult cases and two patients had already been strangled by her ice bear like arm that was trained in killing by accident In the first case it was judged a misfortune The second case was less clear, and a new event would result into a thorough investigation The usual rumour was that she was a lost sheep from a notorious family who trailed behind her an obscure career of dubious incidents in several asylums in Spain Marquez short stories are all strong enough to stand by themselves and are entertaining to read, with subtle humour and a touch of magic I ve only read One Hundred Years , which is beyond a doubt a true masterpiece Here, some stories seem irregular Thats about all I can find as detriment to this clever collection of short some EXTREMELY so stories They all have several things in common the protagonists are Latinoamericanos in olde Europa The settings pan around the continent from Madrid to the Spanish coast, London, France, Italia etc The prose is good enough to inspire one to fly over there post haste everything j I ve only read One Hundred Years , which is beyond a doubt a true masterpiece Here, some stories seem irregular Thats about all I can find as detriment to this clever collection of short some EXTREMELY so stories They all have several things in common the protagonists are Latinoamericanos in olde Europa The settings pan around the continent from Madrid to the Spanish coast, London, France, Italia etc The prose is good enough to inspire one to fly over there post haste everything just seems so poetic and life altering there sigh Also, most of the vignettes deal with an all time favorite theme death Most of the citizens of the book are not youngsters probably reflect the author s own feelings of antiquity and age.I did like seven or so tales intensely, but some others feel like quack intros to potentially amazing plots Instead of keeping with the ideas to elongate them into other full length masterwork novels, Garcia Marquez seems, well, censored Reading this in Spanish makes a HUGE difference, I believe, to the overall experience The rhetoric is often times untranslateable, and I believe that the English transfer would probably be less rich in prose, as the author loves to sprinkle Spanish sayings and laugh inducing wit into the melting pot The lack of overall fantastic elements such as in, say 100 Years is sometimes kind of a downer.I say Good, but probably not a milestone for the author nor, as is usually the case with Marquez s contribution to globe wide lit, one Truly Remarkable work A truly superb short story collection I love the short stories of Marquez and his later pieces are even better than his earlier tales This book features twelve stories written between 1976 and 1982 The first story, Bon Voyage, Mr President , states the general theme of those that follow Latin American citizens adrift or trapped in Europe.Some of the stories arefantastical than others Two of the best are also two of the most kafkaesque I Only Came to Use the Phone and The Trail A truly superb short story collection I love the short stories of Marquez and his later pieces are even better than his earlier tales This book features twelve stories written between 1976 and 1982 The first story, Bon Voyage, Mr President , states the general theme of those that follow Latin American citizens adrift or trapped in Europe.Some of the stories arefantastical than others Two of the best are also two of the most kafkaesque I Only Came to Use the Phone and The Trail of your Blood in the Snow , both of which feature unwilling incarceration in hospitals The latter story is heartwrenching as well as disturbing and written in exquisite prose This was one of the books that had been on my to read list the longest, and I chose it for my most recent speed dating project I was originally going to count it for my Around the World challenge, and still kind of am, but it doesn t take place in just one country Quite the opposite, each story takes place in a different European country, often with displaced Latin Americans as characters.It just isn t surprising that these stories come from the same author as Memories of My Melancholy Whores, This was one of the books that had been on my to read list the longest, and I chose it for my most recent speed dating project I was originally going to count it for my Around the World challenge, and still kind of am, but it doesn t take place in just one country Quite the opposite, each story takes place in a different European country, often with displaced Latin Americans as characters.It just isn t surprising that these stories come from the same author as Memories of My Melancholy Whores, because most of these stories find the storyteller looking back, at a country or an event, and there is quite a bit of nostalgia here It feels like the author is old My impressions may be a bit off, as the author is still alive and these stories were originally published in 1992 There is also a great deal of fantasy, magical realism, and horror You never know when it is coming, and as a reader, that makes for better adventures in the pages.Story highlights The Saint This story bleeds over into fantasy, about a child who dies but does not decay, and her father does everything to try to get her canonized I Sell My Dreams A woman is remembered for her dream interpretations I loved this I Only Came to Use the Phone Don t get on the wrong bus Terrifying The Ghosts of August Takes place in Arezzo, a ghost story Maria dos Prazeres A retired prostitute prepares for her death, and I loved this line After the unhurried supper and conversation, they made sendentary love from memory, which left both of them with a taste of disaster Light is Like Water What if you took a child s imagination to the logical conclusion The Trail of Your Blood in the Snow Oh, so sad Read this during my rabid Garcia Marquez consumption of last year and it s one of the only short story collections that I actually enjoyed Usually, I can t get into short stories, I always find the character development lacking and then just can t relate, plus I always feel cheated at the end on the occasions that I did enjoy the story because I wantBut, I think that Gabriel Garcia Marquez is simply so good at storytelling he can wrap the whole story up in a tiny package and have it sta Read this during my rabid Garcia Marquez consumption of last year and it s one of the only short story collections that I actually enjoyed Usually, I can t get into short stories, I always find the character development lacking and then just can t relate, plus I always feel cheated at the end on the occasions that I did enjoy the story because I wantBut, I think that Gabriel Garcia Marquez is simply so good at storytelling he can wrap the whole story up in a tiny package and have it stand up to hisepic works Strange Pilgrims is a collection of short stories with an overarching theme the experience of South American expatriates in Europe While I could not connect personally to the theme, I did enjoy the stories, which were imaginative and expertly constructed The stories deal with alienation, confusion, and death, though they do so with a sort of melancholy playfulness They are light on magical realism elements though these elements do feature in some stories, most notably in Light is Like Water Strange Pilgrims is a collection of short stories with an overarching theme the experience of South American expatriates in Europe While I could not connect personally to the theme, I did enjoy the stories, which were imaginative and expertly constructed The stories deal with alienation, confusion, and death, though they do so with a sort of melancholy playfulness They are light on magical realism elements though these elements do feature in some stories, most notably in Light is Like Water , opting for astraightforward, albeit whimsical, approach to storytelling Strange Pilgrims is a collection of short stories from Gabriel Garc a Marquez, written in the seventies and released until much longer This stories are not the perfect stories you expect from the celebrated author of Hundred Years of Solitude, some of them seem thrown together and are very clich But the few that work, work really well I really liked the magical realism aspect in some of them like The Saint, Light is Like Water and I Sell My Dreams But the most gripping ones were the ones th Strange Pilgrims is a collection of short stories from Gabriel Garc a Marquez, written in the seventies and released until much longer This stories are not the perfect stories you expect from the celebrated author of Hundred Years of Solitude, some of them seem thrown together and are very clich But the few that work, work really well I really liked the magical realism aspect in some of them like The Saint, Light is Like Water and I Sell My Dreams But the most gripping ones were the ones that spoke of tales of desperation and hopelessness The Trail of Your Blood in the Snow and I Only Came to Use the Phone (FREE PDF) ⚢ Doce cuentos peregrinos ⚢ Reescrib todos los cuentos otra vez desde el principio en ocho meses febriles en los que no necesit preguntarme d nde terminaba la vida y d nde empezaba la imaginaci n, porque me ayudaba la sospecha de que quiz s no fuera cierto nada de lo vivido veinte a os antes en Europa La escritura se me hizo entonces tan fluida que a ratos me sent a escribiendo por el puro placer de narrar, que es quiz s el estado humano que m s se parece a la levitaci n Adem s, trabajando todos los cuentos a la vez y saltando de uno a otro con plena libertad, consegu una visi n panor mica que me salv del cansancio de los comienzos sucesivos, y me ayud a cazar redundancias ociosas y contradicciones mortales Creo haber logrado as el libro de cuentos m s pr ximo al que siempre quise escribir Like M rquez always, the definitive definition of splendid He made a note of something in the prologue, though, that caught my interest on the decades he worked on these stories, on how they unexpectedly drove him with just as much frustration as work on a novel The effort involved in writing a short story is as intense as beginning a novel, where everything must be defined in the first paragraph structure, tone, style, rhythm, length, and sometimes even the personality of a character Al Like M rquez always, the definitive definition of splendid He made a note of something in the prologue, though, that caught my interest on the decades he worked on these stories, on how they unexpectedly drove him with just as much frustration as work on a novel The effort involved in writing a short story is as intense as beginning a novel, where everything must be defined in the first paragraph structure, tone, style, rhythm, length, and sometimes even the personality of a character All the rest is the pleasure of writing, the most intimate, solitary pleasure one can imagine But a story has no beginning, no end Either it works or it doesn t Which is exactly what I like to hear, both in line and in contrast with Cormac McCarthy when he said, I m not interested in writing short stories Anything that doesn t take years of your life and drive you to suicide hardly seems worth doing As when I first read that, I agree in part up to the fact that as M rquez is saying here short stories have just as much right, and power, to willfully wrestle away decades of your life