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Affections by Rodrigo Hasbún
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Affections

by Rodrigo Hasbún

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411,664,912 (4)1
Bolivia (1) family (1) HH (1) history (1) revolution (1)

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I bought this book because I'd never read a Bolivian book, and reading the first page I loved the voice and all the questions the text immediately opened up. I was not disappointed, in fact the book has many voices which are just distinguished enough to allow you to piece together who is who in the family and which one of them is speaking. The skill of the writer and translator (Sophie Hughes) is in having you feel you know all of the characters despite the book being only 140 pages long. This could have been told as a sprawling family saga, but the author has decided to pare it done to its essentials and the book is all the more beautiful for that.

The story is based on real people -- the German Ertl family living in Bolivia in the middle of the 20th century -- and if I had any criticism it would be that you will probably gain more from reading the book plot-wise if you are prepared to find out a little of the background of the country and the characters. That said, it is pretty fascinating background to learn about and I spent a happy hour browsing wikipedia and youtube.

All in all, great characterisation and writing which needs a little work from the reader, but which is well rewarded. ( )
  rrmmff2000 | Jul 10, 2016 |
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