Recommendation: Pedro Paramo*

Tuesday evening I sent an email to all my fellow clubbers, with the subject: “BOOK CLUB EMERGENCY!” There I was, just 24 hours away from the meeting, and I hadn’t read the book. I had ordered it (on April 17!) from amazon and it hadn’t arrived. Darn that super saver shipping! Luckily, Hilary came to my rescue and even dropped off her copy at my house.

The book: Pedro Paramo by Juan Rulfo. Jenna, who chose this book for our group, is a serious student of literature in Spanish, and I always appreciate her selections. The book is only 122 pages so I could read it in one day. I want to read it again, though, to absorb it a little better. Pedro Paramo has been called the “skeleton” version of One Hundred Years of Solitude. Published in 1959, it is an early example of magical realism. A man promises his dying mother he will visit the home of his father, who stole her money and sent her off to live with her sister. The man fulfills his promise, but discovers his father’s town is full of ghosts (literally!). Pedro Paramo is a “dead people” book. Various villagers fade in and out of the novel, they tell their story, then fade away again. The book packs a real emotional punch.

I love Latin American literature. Favorites include Love in the Time of Cholera*, The Hummingbird’s Daughter*, and In the Time of the Butterflies*. I especially like reading Latin American literature here in Yuma. Seeing palm trees and sunshine out the window definitely adds to the experience. The author of Pedro Paramo, Juan Rulfo, wrote less than 300 pages. I’ve read 122 now, and I want more!

*Yuma County Library Book


1 Comment »

  1. Eliana said

    So now you need to make a list of other ‘dead people books.’ That could be your thesis for when you get your library degree…I have your whole future planned out. But not in an especially creepy way, I promise.

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