Read No One Writes to the Colonel by Gabriel García Márquez Free Online
Book Title: No One Writes to the Colonel|
The author of the book: Gabriel García Márquez
Edition: Penguin Books
Date of issue: February 29th 1996
ISBN 13: 9780140157499
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 25.90 MB
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Reader ratings: 5.3
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I was stuck without a book at my relatives' house today. Fortunately, they were readers, so rooting through their bookshelves I found this novelette by Marquez which I had not yet read. Talk about serendipity.
This is a short story set in the familiar magical realism universe of Aureliano Buendia and the land of Macondo from One Hundred Years of Solitude. However, there is no magic here: it is the brutally realistic tale of the unnamed "colonel" and his wife, who live in penury in the all-too-familiar dictatorship of a South American nation. Their son Augustin has been killed by the authorities for distributing seditious literature. The colonel and his wife eke out their days, pinning their hopes on the military pension which should arrive any day; and the fighting cock owned by their son, which would hopefully prove to be the champion, when the cockfight season arrives. However, the exigencies of existence and his wife's constant nagging makes the colonel contemplate the unthinkable - sell the cock to the bloodsucking trader Sabas. But there is still time - and as the fighting season arrives, the colonel recovers his dignity in the utter depths of shame.
This small novelette is very rich in metaphor which talks to the reader at many levels. The colonel, waiting for the letter every Friday which would announce his pension but is always doomed to disappointment ("No one writes to the colonel," as the postmaster says) is the quintessential tragic hero albeit in modern non-romantic garb. The fighter cock is the symbol of his fast-fading dignity, also the last thing to memorise their son by; its sale to the rapacious capitalist is the last nail in the coffin of the proud manhood of a class. Indeed, the cock, as Augustin's friends insist, does not belong to the colonel alone but to the country as a whole. Metaphors of sickness abound: the colonel's perennial stomache problem, his wife's asthma, and the severe diabetes of the trader Sabas. The dreariness of the atmosphere is compounded by the incessantly falling rain.
Vintage Marquez, in short.
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Read information about the authorGabriel José de la Concordia García Márquez was a Colombian novelist, short-story writer, screenwriter and journalist. García Márquez, familiarly known as "Gabo" in his native country, was considered one of the most significant authors of the 20th century. In 1982, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.
He studied at the University of Bogotá and later worked as a reporter for the Colombian newspaper El Espectador and as a foreign correspondent in Rome, Paris, Barcelona, Caracas and New York. He wrote many acclaimed non-fiction works and short stories, but is best-known for his novels, such as One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967) and Love in the Time of Cholera (1985). His works have achieved significant critical acclaim and widespread commercial success, most notably for popularizing a literary style labeled as magical realism, which uses magical elements and events in order to explain real experiences. Some of his works are set in a fictional village called Macondo, and most of them express the theme of solitude.
Having previously written shorter fiction and screenplays, García Márquez sequestered himself away in his Mexico City home for an extended period of time to complete his novel Cien años de soledad, or One Hundred Years of Solitude, published in 1967. The author drew international acclaim for the work, which ultimately sold tens of millions of copies worldwide. García Márquez is credited with helping introduce an array of readers to magical realism, a genre that combines more conventional storytelling forms with vivid, layered fantasy.
Another one of his novels, El amor en los tiempos del cólera (1985), or Love in the Time of Cholera, drew a large global audience as well. The work was partially based on his parents' courtship and was adapted into a 2007 film starring Javier Bardem. García Márquez wrote seven novels during his life, with additional titles including El general en su laberinto (1989), or The General in His Labyrinth, and Del amor y otros demonios (1994), or Of Love and Other Demons.
(Arabic: جابرييل جارسيا ماركيز) (Hebrew: גבריאל גארסיה מרקס)
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