viernes, 10 de septiembre de 2010

An Award, a Challenge, and a Group Read


While many mainstream bloggers appear to be blissfully unaware of the fact, there are indeed a handful of South American writers not named Gabriel García Márquez, Isabel Allende, or Walmart inspirational guru Paulo Coelho.  In any event, the Non-Structured Reading Group (Claire of kiss a cloud,  E.L. Fay of This Book and I Could Be Friends, Emily of Evening All Afternoon, Frances of Nonsuch Book, Sarah of what we have here is a failure to communicate, yours truly, and whatever other readers we can rope into reading along with us in a given month) will be discussing one of these blog phantoms later in the month in the form of a group read of Tomás Eloy Martínez's 1995 Santa Evita.  Feel free to join us if you're interested!  Although I've read at least two other novels by the Argentinean Eloy Martínez (1934-2010) and enjoyed the clever way he mixes fact with fiction, I'm really looking forward to finally reading his signature piece: a semi-true novel about the fate of Eva Perón's cadaver and the multiple "copies" of it that were made in a truth is stranger than fiction epoch of Argentinean history.  The García Márquez blurb on the front of my import copy ("Aquí está, por fin, la novela que siempre quise leer" ["Here, at last, is the novel I always wanted to read"]) may be enough of a come-on for some readers; others may be more enticed by the fact that in 2007 the work was voted the eighth best Spanish language novel of the last 25 years by a Semana.com panel.  Please note that Santa Evita is available in an English translation under the same title (published by Vintage here in the States) and that discussions about the book will take place on participating blogs on or around Friday, 9/24.  Hope you can join us.

In related news, the Orbis Terrarum Film Mini-Challenge that I've been "hosting" here every other month is now entering its third month of (theoretical) foreign film fun.  Since I've been the only participant so far, time to move on to the next item on today's agenda!

To wit.  Emily Jane of the new to me Booked All Week blog recently introduced herself by letting me know that she'd selected Caravana de recuerdos as a recipient of the One Lovely Blog Award that you see below.  Although I now have to question my new blogger friend's judgement (ha ha), I do appreciate the acknowledgement and am happy to have discovered Booked All Week this way.  Thanks, Emily Jane!

11 comentarios:

  1. I shall be joining in with reading Santa Evita richard looking forward to it ,thanks for reminder will start over the weekend with it ,got three trapped tigers g cabrera Infante the other day from library have you read it ?I missed you film challenge I will choose a dvd to watch got quite a few french ,german and spanish films will pick one to review ,all the best stu

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  2. I keep meaning to do a post for the OT film challenge! Will try to get to it soon - August & September have been nuts but things should be winding down around here soon. Looking forward to the group read! (Are we supposed to pimp our particular contributions? I didn't do Moo Pak. Oh well. I am very bad at publicity, but Frances makes up for me.)

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  3. I try, Emily, I try. Book pimp tendencies. Occupational hazard.

    Started doing some background reading for this one, Richard, as I was uncertain that I would be able to distinguish between fact and fiction in this one. And as for your challenge that I keep trying to get to? So sorry! Life has been nuts.

    Congrats on your award! Image on your blog made me smile a little.

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  4. Haha, you're welcome!

    I would LOVE to join y'all in reading Santa Evita, unfortunately I just don't have the time right now. I'll have to wait a while :(

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  5. I'm really looking forward to this month's read. It will be splendid to get back to some South American literature, and the premise of this book is SO intriguing.

    Ooog, I've been slacking in the OT: Film department, although I have watched several foreign films per month this summer...

    Congrats on the award!

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  6. Ey, I heart GGM! But thanks for introducing me to other South American writers I wouldn't have known about. Excited to read about Evita. (Your cover is creepy..)

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  7. *Stu: I haven't read the Cabrera Infante novel you mention yet, but it's supposed to be a classic. Look forward to your review! Glad you'll be reading Santa Evita with us and would be equally glad to see what foreign film pick you have in store for us. Cheers!

    *Emily: No prob about the film challenge--I actually think it's kind of funny that everybody's been too busy to participate! As I understand it, pimping one's book choice for the Non-Structured Group is entirely optional. I've chosen to do it for both my Perec and Eloy Martínez picks, but then again, I'm street, man! :D

    *Frances: I think it's only natural that the Book Temptress be called out for some book pimping. That's kind of your job, isn't it?!? No worries about the film flim flam and touché about the award image. As you might imagine, I got a big chuckle out of that one, too!

    *Emily Jane: I'm way behind on three other group reads I committed to, so I totally understand the lack of time thing. However, hoping you can join us for one of our other group reads later in the year (at last count, we have at least one a month through the end of the year...plus Frances is hosting Madame Bovary and Doctor Zhivago shared reads...plus Frances and I and some others will be doing a Cairo Trilogy readalong at some point). Cheers!

    *Sarah: I hope Santa Evita lives up to the hype--you read so much great Lat Am literature last year that I'm kind of worried the bar's been set too high for you! Thanks for your comment about the award and no worries about the film thing, really.

    *Claire: I never thought of that cover as looking particularly creepy, but now that you mention it, I can kind of see your point! True story: Was originally planning on proposing Bolaño's Nazi Literature in the Americas in lieu of Santa Evita as my second pick for the group after Perec's Life A User's Manual; however, I didn't know if I could wait that long to read it (as it turns out, I couldn't) and I wasn't sure at the time how you'd all feel about reading another Bolaño so soon after 2666. Santa Evita will have a hard time living up to those Bolaño and Perec titles for me, so I hope it's just a good solid read for most of the people reading it. Keeping my fingers crossed anyway. Cheers! P.S. I'm not really anti-García Márquez--just think he gets way too much attention compared to non-Boom writers before and after him. Ironically (or maybe not), García Márquez worship is more prevalent on English language blogs than Spanish language blogs from what I can tell.

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  8. I suppose I'm guilty of having only read García Márquez and Allende, but I'll plead that time has been the enemy more than lack of awareness! (I have Borges on the shelf waiting patiently, for example.) At any rate, Santa Evita sounds intriguing enough (truth stranger than fiction? I'm in!) that I will be reading it shortly, but I highly doubt I will get it finished before your group read-along. For one thing, I still have to wait for it to wing its way from half-way across the state... I'm just happy I can get it through the library so easily, and without even needing ILL!

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  9. *Amanda: Time is the enemy for a lot of us, all right! Anyway, good luck with the Borges and with Santa Evita when it gets to you--I'll look forward to hearing what you have to say about both of them! P.S. You must have a great library system wherever you live.

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  10. Richard, it does seem that we have a pretty great library system! I was able to get Santa Evita thanks to a program the local library is part of that links 17 or so library systems across the state--if your local library doesn't have a book and one of the others does, you can request it to be sent to your local branch. It's great!

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  11. Re: GGM, that's true (probably because he has been translated more widely than others?). A reason why blogs are a blessing because without them (/you) we/I would be stuck with just him and a handful of others, yikes!

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