Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Rating : 4.0/5
Number of Pages : 348
Format : Literary Fiction
Reason for Reading : Guardian 100 Greatest Books Challenge, What's in a Name II Challenge

The story of love between Florentino Ariza (male) and Fermina Daza (female). He falls in love with her as a young man and courts her with letters and violin serenades. Shortly before they are due to marry, she changes her mind and rejects him. He never recovers whereas she goes on to marry Dr Urbino Juvenal and it is not until fifty-one years, nine months and four days later that Florentino Ariza gets a second chance at love.

The story continues as they follow their seperate lives throughout adulthood. Fermina Daza has children and has to deal with problems within her marriage. Florentino Ariza has a string of secret affairs (mostly with widows) and is subject to gossip as being homosexual for never having married. Both do cross paths as they continue to live in the same city and both are successful. Fermina Daza realises she never loved Florentino Ariza as a teenager and only in later life is she also given a second chance at happiness.

Beautifully written, I was dubious if I would enjoy it after not liking One Hundred Years of Solitude by the same author. I have completely changed my opinion and an highly recommend this novel and understand why it has become a classic. I really enjoyed getting to know the main characters and the people in their lives and the ending nearly made me weep.

9 comments:

Robin said...

I loved this book and his beautiful writing. I still haven't read One Hundred Years. I think I'm a little afraid of being disappointed by it.

Debi said...

I've been avoiding this book for some reason, but everything lately seems to screaming at me to give it a try. Your review may just have pushed me over the edge.

Marg said...

I loved this book when I read it. It is more understated in terms of the strangeness of the contents like in 100 Years.

I also really enjoyed Of Love and Other Demones. I really should read another of his books soon.

Alice Teh said...

I have so many good things about this book. I did, at one time, read it, btu had to abandon it because I just couldn't get through the first few pages. Maybe it's timing. I was exhausted and stressed. I think I'm going to take a second look at it soon. Thanks for the review!

Ladytink_534 said...

The movie trailer for this is so rich looking. I bet the book was amazing.

Chris said...

So glad you liked it Rhinoa! I read this two year ago and fell in love with it! Great read.

Nymeth said...

I'm so glad to hear you liked it!

Kim L said...

I really want to read this one when I have a chance! It sounds like a good read.

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