Gabriel Garcia Marquez: A Life


Gabriel Garcia Marquez: A Life Biography
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Product Description

The first full and authorized biography of the 1982 Nobel Laureate in Literature - the most popular international novelist of the last fifty years. While telling the story of the young man who rose from obscure provincial journalist toprogenitor of a new literature, Gerald Martin also considers the tensions in Garcia Marquez's life between celebrity and the quest for literary quality, between politics and writing, and between the seductions of power, solitude, and love. He explores the contrast in the writer's homeland, Colombia, between the exuberance of his Caribbean background and the authoritarianism of highland Bogota; and his turning away from the magical realism of 100 Years of Solitude.

Editorial Reviews

A probing biography of the 1982 Nobel Prize laureate in literature, whom Pablo Neruda hailed as a Cervantes for our time.Martin (Modern Languages/Univ. of Pittsburgh; Journeys Through the Labyrinth: Latin American Fiction in the Twentieth Century, 1989, etc.) begins by noting that he has been working on this life of Gabriel Garc'a Márquez for two decades. The effort shows. Born in 1927, Garc'a Márquez remains best known for the book he published when he was 40, One Hundred Years of Solitude, a generational epic whose landscape stretches from ocean to deep jungle. Martin's signal contribution is to reveal, even more so than Garc'a Márquez did in his memoir, just how roman à clef–ish that fictional world is. Yet, of course, a particular storytelling genius is needed to bring even the liveliest real-world figures into habitation in a novel. Martin rightly notes that whereas the literature of the first half of the 20th century has several central figures—Woolf, Joyce, Hemingway et al.—that of the latter half finds only Garc'a Márquez universally acknowledged as a master. That acknowledgment took years to come, of course, and early on Garc'a Márquez was written off as a would-be Faulkner—Faulkner being one of his idols and central to the development of modern Latin American literature, a body of work in which, as Martin also observes, Garc'a Márquez's writings appear conservative against his postmodern fellows, and even scorned for being "transparent, easy to read, and accessible even to people who only had a modest literary education." Martin offers lucid literary commentary alongside the facts of his subject's life, which, as is well known, was marked by excellence in journalism and controversy in politics. Though Garc'a Márquez was a noted scourger of Yankee imperialism and friend of Castro, Chavez and the like, he was not shy about having amassed considerable wealth over a long career.Essential for Garc'a Márquez fans, and an exemplary literary biography.First printing of 50,000. Agent: Elizabeth Sheinkman/Curtis Brown UK Copyright Kirkus 2009 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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