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The Bad Girl: A Novel Hardcover – October 2, 2007

4.5 out of 5 stars 180 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Veteran Peruvian novelist Vargas Llosa's appealing, nostalgic latest opens in the summer of 1950, as Ricardo Slim Somocurcio, a rambunctious teen in the affluent Miraflores section of Lima, meets 14-year-old nymph Lily. With her younger sister, Lily is masquerading as a wealthy, liberated Chilean girl to disguise her slum origins. She is soon exposed by a jealous schoolmate and disappears, but Ricardo is smitten. There are dashes of Vertigo and Last Year at Marienbad in what follows. As an adult, Ricardo's work as a translator for UNESCO takes him over the decades everywhere from late '50s Paris to the Beatles's London to gangland Tokyo. Everywhere he goes, his bad girl shows up in dramatically different disguises, denying she was his childhood sweetheart or that they've ever met before, but ravishing him completely. None of the characters is particularly nuanced, but Vargas Llosa is a master of description, and his gift for evoking sounds, smells and tastes makes each (often very graphic) encounter with Lily fresh. And with Ricardo's knack for being where the action is, whole scenes of the postwar period flare into view, as Lily's sexual perfidy eventually leads to serious trouble. The result is rich but not in the least deep. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Bookmarks Magazine

No one can quite understand why Mario Vargas Llosa hasn’t yet won the Nobel Prize in Literature. As The Bad Girl proves, Vargas Llosa can create something new and exciting even out of a well-worn plot and stock characters. Though this isn’t one of his major works (see our profile of Vargas Llosa in Issue No. 15, March/April 2005), critics love that this novel paints a panoramic history of four decades of South American and European life, continually challenges readers’ expectations, and questions the very nature of identity, "goodness," and "badness." But for all its thoughtful tackling of complex themes, The Bad Girl is certainly not all seriousness; as the Washington Post declares, "Obviously, the novel was written for the sheer fun of itâ€"the fun for Vargas Llosa in writing it, the fun for us in reading it."

Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.


Product details

  • Item Weight : 1.25 pounds
  • Hardcover : 288 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 0374182434
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0374182434
  • Dimensions : 6.52 x 1.03 x 8.81 inches
  • Publisher : Farrar, Straus and Giroux; 1st edition (October 2, 2007)
  • Language: : English
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 180 ratings

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4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5
180 global ratings
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Top reviews from other countries

ljdaintyho
4.0 out of 5 stars A book that draws you in
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 17, 2017
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Matt
5.0 out of 5 stars Present
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 30, 2018
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Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars An incredible story of fatal attraction
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 29, 2019
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Inga B.
5.0 out of 5 stars What a story!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 6, 2016
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Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Vargas Llosa at his romantic best or worst!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 17, 2019
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