Saturday, April 16, 2011

reading: One Hundred Years of Solitude

I've been reading A Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. I can't do it justice in the way of praise.

Here are some of the notes I've jotted down about it. I keep a blank paper for a bookmark, and I jot stuff down as I read. This tiny list of quotes do not even begin to tell the magnificence of this novel, but these are simply a few random quotes.

Page 104: the explanation of Liberals and Conservatives:
"Since Aureliano at that time had very confused notions about the difference between Conservatives and Liberals, his father-in-law gave him some schematic lessons.

The Liberals, he said, were Freemasons, bad people, wanting to hang priests, to institute civil marriage and divorce, to recognize the rights of illegitimate children as equal to those of legitimate ones, and to cut the country up into a federal system that would take power away from the supreme authority. The Conservatives, on the other hand, who had received their power directly form God, proposed the establishment of public order and family morality. They were the defenders of the faith of Christ, of the principle of authority, and were not prepared to permit the country to be broken down into autonomous entities."
Page 179:
"And then he would sleep like a stone that was not concerned by the slightest indication of worry."

Page 185:
"The certainty that his day was assigned gave him a mysterious immunity, an immortality for a fixed period . . ."
Page 202:
“The parish priest began to show the signs of senility that would lead him to say years later that the devil had probably won his rebellion against God, and that he was the one who sat on the heavenly throne, without revealing his true identity in order to trap the unwary”
page 208:
"Cease, cows, life is short."
page 212:

Taken out of context, it won't mean much, but the pages leading up to this passage makes the passage itself reveal the most beautiful woman in the world (in the mind's eye). It is difficult to explain:
"... and then she uncovered her face and gave her thanks with a smile. That was all she did. Not only for the gentleman, but for all the men who had the unfortunate privilege of seeing her, that was an eternal instant."
page 214:
"It seemed as if some penetrating lucidity permitted her to see the reality of things beyond any formalism."
page 216:
" . . . the secret of a good old age is simply an honorable pact with solitude."
page 220:
"The only candle that will make him come is always lighted."

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I am the author of 5 books: Android Down, Firewood for Cannibals, The Cubicles of Madness, Robot Stories, and most recently, Various Meats and Cheeses. I live and write in Michigan. My website is at