Author: Gabriel García Márquez Series: Standalone Genre: Classic Release Date: June 5, 1967 Book Length: 429 pages Publisher: Harper Perennial Modern Classics Review: 5/5
The brilliant, bestselling, landmark novel that tells the story of the Buendia family, and chronicles the irreconcilable conflict between the desire for solitude and the need for love—in rich, imaginative prose that has come to define an entire genre known as “magical realism.”
In a nutshell, this story is about the Buendía family who founded a remote town called Macondo, where they have very limited access to the outside world except with nomadic gypsies who bring with them magical inventions. The story takes you through multiple generations of this family and all their trials and tribulations spanning over one hundred years, beginning somewhere in the 1800s.
Anyone who knows me knows that I enjoy finishing my books in a few days’ time. One Hundred Years of Solitude took me about one hundred years (aka 2 weeks) to read, but it was the most enjoyable experience. This is not something I would recommend speeding through; the magical realism gives normalcy to the delusions of the world in which Gabriel Garcia Marquez created in Macondo and it is almost necessary to drift through slowly to take it all in. In addition, many of the characters have the same or similar names. There is a family tree at the beginning of the book that you will have to reference often to keep track of who is who which is very helpful, but I don’t think it would be as enjoyable as an audiobook as you can get mixed up easily and every chapter is quite heavy.
It was very interesting to go through the lives of these characters, I started to feel like a part of their crazy family. Although a work of fiction, some of the events that took place in this novel directly parallel actual political historic events that took place in Columbia at the time. I find history extremely fascinating, so I was loving how it was intertwined with all the magical aspects. The ending also blew me away and I was very impressed with how it all came together. Do I think this book is for everyone? No. I can see why people wouldn’t like it. But do I think it’s worth trying? 100%. If you can appreciate it for what it is, you are in for a really magical experience.