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Collected Novellas (Perennial Classics) Paperback – January 8, 2008


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Product Details

  • Series: Perennial Classics
  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial Modern Classics; 1st HarperPerennial ed edition (January 8, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006093266X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060932664
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #129,131 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

All three of these psychologically provocative novellas by 1982 Nobel Laureate Garcia Marquez involve the turmoil of violent death in small, lethargic Colombian villages. "Leaf Storm," like Antigone, poses a conflict over burial. The colonel is set on honoring the local doctor with a burial despite the wishes of the townspeople, who hate him because he refused to treat the wounded after an outburst of political violence. In "No One Writes to the Colonel," another colonel waits as if for Godot for a pension check from the government that never comes. Is his faith in the future all that matters--or is it irresponsible? "Chronicle of a Death Foretold" concerns the murder of a man for allegedly making love to a woman who on her wedding night to another is unable to prove her virginity. The tension stems from why no one, including the local priest, tries to stop the murder when everyone knows just how it will happen. Highly recommended.
- Jack Shreve, Allegany Community Coll., Cumberland, Md.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"Every scene, every gesture sings life and denies death...He is an absolute master." -- -- New York Times

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By GeoX on March 3, 2003
Format: Paperback
The less said about 'Leaf Storm,' the better, I think. It was Garcia Marquez's first piece of long fiction, written in his twenties, and the truth is, it's not very good. Actually, it's pretty bad. It's overwritten in that 'bad Faulkner' way, and it lacks anything that would make for an interesting story--compelling characters, powerful conflicts, interesting ideas--none of these are to be found therein. It feels as if it should have received quite a bit of revision before publication. As it stands, its only real value is as an embryonic draft of One Hundred Years of Solitude.
'No One Writes to the Colonel,' on the other hand, is a truly excellent story. It's a slow, meditative piece with very little action, chronicling a month or so in the life of the title character and his wife in a stagnant Colombian town as he waits in vain for the pension, which he has been owed for fifteen years, to arrive in the mail. Although it's a subdued story saturated with sorrow and regret, it also features a strong undercurrent of hope which cannot be extinguished. The Colonel is an inspiring character, and, after One Hundred Years of Solitude, his story is my favorite thing I've read by Garcia Marquez. Apparently there's been a movie made of it, but I have no desire to see it.
'Chronicle of a Death Foretold' is also very good. It tells of the events surrounding and leading up to a brutal murder which ultimately implicates an entire town. Featuring the recollections of dozens of characters who were involved in the event, peripherally or seriously, it weaves a mesmerizing web of small events that all happen just the wrong way. The death is indeed 'foretold;' it could easily have been prevented by just about anyone in the story, yet somehow, no one does.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By McGrath-Muniz on March 19, 2000
Format: Paperback
Here between the bounds of this paperback we have 3 very good translations of short novels from the hand of Marquez...although I have yet to fully grasp "Leaf Storm", it does offer to the reader a sort of prelude to "Macondo"...although don't expect the world to be potrayed as it was in "One Hundred years of Solitude". ...the 2nd novella "No One Writes Colonel" is a great read...here is everyday life, as the colonel awaits a letter...however it is the third novella, "Chronicle of a Death Foretold" that drew me in, as a gripping page turner. Marquez holds our interest with his detailed account, even though we already know the outcome. It is a great collection and a good follow up if you have finished "One Hundred Years of Solitude". Highly recommended because in this edition you get al three works, whilst you could pay up to thrice as much if you pursued them seperately....
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Format: Paperback
A must-have bargain, this volume presents three of Garcia Marquez's four novellas--two written early in his career and one published after he had achieved worldwide fame. The earliest piece, "Leaf Storm" (1955) is, so to speak, a chronicle of a death scorned; it takes place during a mere half hour in the middle of the day in 1928, but it recalls the events of several decades. The story seems to echo deliberately several aspects of the plot, structure, and technique of Faulkner's "As I Lay Dying"; its stream-of-consciousness narrative alternates among three family members--a colonel, his daughter, and her young son--as they muse over what to do about a corpse. Unlike Faulkner, however, Garcia Marquez does not give the dead man--a local doctor--a voice; his life is instead recalled through the memories of the other three characters. The colonel and his family battle against those who would refuse the man a decent burial: the townspeople, because the doctor had refused to treat their wounded during the war, and the priest, who "won't let them bury in consecrated ground a man who hanged himself after having lived sixty years without God." Although the novella lacks the magic realism for which Garcia Marquez is now renowned, it nevertheless is one of his starkest (and, I feel, most powerful) efforts, anticipating many of his later themes and introducing the locales and characters who populate his more mature work.

"No One Writes to the Colonel" (published 1961, but written several years earlier) takes up anti-government themes only hinted at in "Leaf Storm" and makes them central to the story: tyrannical censorship, the insensitivity of officials, the violence of repression, corruption. A retired colonel and his wife endure two related struggles that consume his days of retirement.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Rachel Ward on January 28, 2000
Format: Paperback
I read this novel which was written in spanish for part of my spanish A level course at school. I am now at university and have decided to do a topic about Garcia Marques as his work was so insperational to me. The novel portrays a poor mans strugle for survival and has a theme of poverty and deceipt running throughout the novel. The colonel is a symbol of hope whilst his wife is the complete opposite. The colonel waitsfor a letter that never arrives and at the end of the novel the colonel has to force himself to wake up to reality which is displayed by the ironic use of the word 'mierda' at the end of the novel. The imagery and language used in the novel is excellent and i would definatly recommend this novel.
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