The Sound of Things Falling

“The Sound of Things Falling” by Juan Gabriel Vasquez (Colombia) Review Members of our Summer Reading Group liked the differences in writing styles and themes of this year’s four shortlisted books finding most of the stories highly enjoyable. “The Sound of Things Falling” is set in present-day Bogota and tells the story of a university professor who befriends a former drug smuggler. Readers found the … Continue reading The Sound of Things Falling

Departing at Dawn

“Departing at Dawn” by Gloria Lisé (Argentina) Review With its subtitle “A Novel of Argentina’s Dirty War”, readers said they found the story to be completely different from what they had imagined. Instead of getting details of the horrors of a military dictatorship, which is what they had been expecting, readers felt they were given an introspective and interesting look at life in that context from … Continue reading Departing at Dawn

A Brief Life

“A Brief Life” by Juan Carlos Onetti (Uruguay) Review Readers struggled with this book finding it an overly hard read. They didn’t warm to any of the characters who they described as unlikeable. They thought the writing style was a bit heavy going at times, with too many passages composed of exceedingly long sentences. Some readers found the alternation of the protagonist’s different lives confusing. … Continue reading A Brief Life

Death as a Side Effect

“Death as a Side Effect” by Ana Maria Shua (Argentina) Review Readers had varying opinions on this book with some of them loving it while others found it unrelentingly bleak. One thing they all agreed upon was that it was extremely well written and that the translator, Andrea G. Labinger, had done an excellent job rendering this. Most readers found the depiction of the dystopian … Continue reading Death as a Side Effect

My Name is Light

“My Name is Light” by Elsa Osorio (Argentina) Review Most readers enjoyed the story finding it a fast-paced read. They liked being enlightened about the lesser-known political situation in Argentina in the seventies and they got a good feel for the fear and tension without too many disturbing details. They also felt that the topic of adoption raised some highly interesting questions, especially concerning the … Continue reading My Name is Light

Last Evenings on Earth

“Last Evenings on Earth” by Roberto Bolano (Chile) Review The first book of the new season was a difficult one for most readers, who used words such as depressing, melancholic, bitty and unusual to express their first impressions of it. They described the style of writing as distinctive, but flat and devoid of emotion. As a result, they found it extremely hard to warm to … Continue reading Last Evenings on Earth

Lost City Radio

“Lost City Radio” by Daniel Alarcon (Peru) Review Most readers found the story both sad and moving, and felt that the author successfully maintained the sad tone throughout the whole book. His use of language evoked the tension and fear created by the conflict. There were mixed feelings about the characters, with some readers finding them well portrayed and likeable, albeit their duality, whereas others … Continue reading Lost City Radio