After mentioning in an earlier post that Mia had planned to include "One Hundred Years of Solitude," one of the most famous Colombian books as one of her suggestions, we were shocked to find that it wasn't available in ebook form. Sadly, this means it does not meet the criteria for our book club & therefore, won't be included in the list below. Instead, Mia is including another of the author's books.
This month you'll have 4 different genres to choose from: 2 works of literature, a satire, 2 memoirs & magical realism. For those unfamiliar with magical realism, this is a genre of fiction originally from Latin America in which magical events occur alongside everyday ones such as a widow sensing the flesh & blood presence of her dead husband – & then going about her day. However, the term itself is controversial. Gabriel García Márquez says that he "simply writes the way my grandmother told stories." Some things which may seem magical from our cultural perspective may not have seemed all that extraordinary to Márquez' grandmother. The concern is that when these Latin American novels are called "magical," we may exoticizing it—taking it out of its cultural context to see it as foreign &, therefore, magical. Indeed, other magical realism works outside of Latin America extend the term using all sorts of fantastical situations to blur the lines between fiction & fantasy. However, the book included in our list stays true to the original idea.
Special thanks this month to the book club members who provided suggestions this month: Ester Elbert & Markey Jones!
NOW ONTO THE VOTING
You can vote until Tues., Feb. 20 11PM ET. (That's NYC time. See this converted to your local time below.)