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Mala índole (1996)

by Javier Marías(Favorite Author)
3.94 of 5 Votes: 1
842040280X (ISBN13: 9788420402802)
review 1: The complete title of the book should be: Bad Nature, or With Elvis in Mexico, and How Difficult it is to Translate Angry People in a Brawl,or the Limitations of the Art of Translation, or the Impossibility of asking Elvis Presley Sing a Spanish Song with perfect Castillan or Catalonian, not Mexican, accent and How One Should Never Use Gay/Homo/Queer/Pu��al/Afeminado/Maric��n as Derogatory Terms, especially just to piss off Fat Mobsters, particularly those with green, silk handkerchiefs.
review 2: Charming reading for a short train trip, or outrageous gimmick designed to trick innocent lovers of Marias (can there be such a thing?) into parting with ten bucks for 15 sheets of toilet paper folded in half and stuck between two unrolled toilet paper cardboa
... morerd tubes with very cheap glue? Yes. Production values aside, this is a story I will value mainly because I can give it to my wife to read in an hour (she reads quickly) and hopefully get her excited about reading other Marias. Esther Allen either translates 'easier' Marias books, or translates them into easier-reading, though less gripping, English (this, Dark Back of Time). It's a fine tale, but it's also a short story from an author who works best over long stretches. Most of his other novels are tied to Shakespeare plays; this one is tied to a bad Elvis movie (I assume it's bad, although I haven't seen it, because the narrator here tells me just how bad it is). There's none of the tension Marias characteristically sets up between two or three events. And the quasi-phenomenological essays are limited to a couple of pages at the start. On the other hand, it's pretty funny; Marias can be very funny but sometimes seems to bury that amid his cleverness and style. So all in all, a nice afternoon for Marias readers, and an extremely easy, possibly misleading entry point for those who are not yet innocent lovers of the author. less
Reviews (see all)
A conscise yet effective novella...talks of the power of language and who in fact takes the blame
Terrific fusion of Borges' wit and Bolano's grit. Looking forward to reading more Marias soon.
I remember this story more as a dream which I think is the point really.
Elliptical, violent and visceral like a Cassavettes film. Excellent.
Bad Nature, or With Elvis in Mexico is hilarious and perfect.
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