From Publishers Weekly
The first English translation of the 1934 novel by prolific Argentinean author Filloy (who died in 2000 at age 106) is a meandering day-in-the-life chronicle of Optimus Oloop, a Finnish statistician living in Buenos Aires, who is described as method personified—an accomplished executioner of spontaneity. His wanderings begin one morning when, on a routine trip to a Turkish-Roman bath, a minor traffic accident unglues him from his punctual reality. Filloy zips frantically between lengthy ruminations steeped in flowery, occasionally madeup language as Op unravels recklessly through his day. Like its main character in the throes of his breakdown, the narrative is at turns fascinating and impossible: Filloy shines in small moments when he displays his expert wordplay—Op's hilarious journal of the prostitutes he's known, or the occasional colorful aphorism—but more often the dense landscape of his language swallows the narrative and ditches the reader. (Aug.)
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"We Argentinians have lost the last of our true comedians, Juan Filloy, philosopher of the soul: a man whose life managed to span three centuries, because he always knew how to live outside the current of the times." --Luisa Valenzuela
"Humor is 'all pervading' or it's nothing at all, as Juan Filloy, Shakespeare, and Max Ernst always knew." --Julio Cortazar
"Lately [Filloy] has been rediscovered by younger writers and critics, who have compared him with Jorge Luis Borges and even with Balzac . . . Freud liked [Op Oloop] so much that he sent Filloy a hand-written letter of congratulations." --The Telegraph, from the author's obituary