Comments: 13
BrokenTune 2 years ago
That sounds like a fascinating concept.
It was! I wasn't sure what to expect from the blurb, but it's a very daring book. Most of the characters are actual people (politicians, members of the royal family, television personalities...), and it's astounding that the author wrote about them the way he did (he goes into detail about the extramarital affairs of the king at the time). Apparently, it's the third book in a trilogy covering Spanish history, and I'll definitely be reading the previous two.
BrokenTune 2 years ago
Wow. Does one need to know the background or would it work also for someone who might remember some of the Royal Family but not much else about Spain at the time?
Would you be looking to read it in Spanish, or in translation? I can't see any editions other than the Spanish language one in a quick Amazon search. The book itself has a lot of slang, and references to Spanish cultural "memes" of the time, so I'm not sure how well it would work. I'd be very curious to find out how non-Spaniards would see it, though! There's stuff in there even I'd forgotten about.

It reminds me of conversations I had with other readers about the last Man Booker winner, Milkman, which is set in Northern Ireland during the Troubles.Someone mentioned that it was a hard read if you weren't somewhat steeped in the culture. But that won't stop me from reading it in the near future!
BrokenTune 2 years ago
Oh, I couldn't read it in Spanish but hadn't even checked yet whether it was available in English or German. D'oh! :(
I'll have a look to see if there are any translations!
BrokenTune 2 years ago
I can't see any on Ammy UK or Ammy Germany. :(
I can't find it, either. :( The only book by Vicent I can find in translation is "Son de mar" ("Der Gesang der Wellen" / "They Came from the Sea"). Have you read that one, LA -- and if so, would you recommend it?
I haven't read that particular one, but I've read other works of his, and he's one of my favorite Spanish authors. His prose is gorgeous, and I love the way his mind works.

The English translation of that title is terribly inaccurate; I'd go for the German. :D

If you do read it, let me know and we'll do a buddy read!
BrokenTune 2 years ago
I'd be up for that buddy read, too! If you'll have me, that is.
Yes, of course! And @LA: Noted about the title. I think I'm going to have a look at both the English and the German texts, though -- I'm actually surprised the German title is such a near-literal translation; usually German translators decide to get "fancy" ... and it almost never works. If that has taught me one thing, it's not to draw any conclusions from the title to the quality of the translation as such! :)

That said, would you expect the Spanish original of this one to be very inaccessible, too? I just may end up reading that. It's been a while, but -- by way of the closest reference I can think of -- I got through Ramón Pernas's "Si tú me dices ven" (which contains the odd insider reference to "things Galicia") just fine; ditto most of the Spanish classics that I read in the original ... as long as they don't / didn't contain too many colloquialisms or other things that someone who hasn't spent a substantial part of their lives in Spain / in the region in qestion just won't "get".
You might be ok in Spanish, Athena! What you could do is look for the Spanish edition on Amazon or Goodreads, and see if there are quotes/excerpts. In fact, here's a link to the Amazon Look Inside feature for this book: https://www.amazon.ca/Premio-Alfaguara-novela-1999-They/dp/8466333444/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1564517948&sr=8-1#reader_B00634J2L0

Desfile de Ciervos did have a lot of deep colloquial stuff, since it's based on a specific cultural moment in Spain. Son de Mar seems a lot more ambiguous, so you'll probably be okay. It looks really poetic! I'm definitely going to read it now.

And BrokenTune, please do join in! It's been a while since I did a buddy read!
Vale y gracias! Yes, judging by the beginning this one should work.