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Almost Never by Daniel Sada

Almost Never (2008)

by Daniel Sada

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I found "Almost Never" on a 2012 Best Books list, but I give it only two stars. Reader advice - I strongly suggest that anyone consider reading this first check out a random chapter before investing time and money. There is relatively little dialog and most of the descriptions and story telling is through lengthy paragraphs that take some time to make the point, often with tangents, random thoughts....Makes for a story that moves at snail pace. Demetrio is a young, hard working man who strikes up a relationship with prostitute Mireya early in the book. Lots of passion, obsession, energy. The last 3/4 of the book deals with D's puruit of Renata, a refined and very "old-fashioned" young lady even for the present times (1946-49 Mexico). Eventually D & R become engaged but D is allowed to only kiss her on the cheek until they are married (why didn't I stop reading here!?) Perhaps some will be enchanted. I was bored. ( )
1 vote maneekuhi | Feb 24, 2013 |
I am in the middle of reading this book and am blown away. The writing style is like no other I have ever read. The book is written in Spanish (which I don't understand) so I am reading the English translation. Apparently the writing style is really difficult to translate and Spanish readers say that the translation is adequate but misses a lot of the zing of the original. All I can say is that there is a lot of zing left.

Anyway, the book is wonderful - amazing scenes, great characters, picaresque plot. Really fun. ( )
  Jeank1rk | May 19, 2012 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Daniel Sadaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Silver, KatherineTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Sex, as an apt pretext for breaking the monotony; motor-sex; anxiety-sex; the habit of sex; as any glut that can well become a burden; colossal, headlong, frenzied, ambiguous sex, as a game that baffles then enlightens then baffles again; pretense-sex, see-through-sex.
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This Rabelaisian tale of lust and longing in the drier precincts of postwar Mexico introduces one of Latin America’s most admired writers to the English-speaking world.

Demetrio Sordo is an agronomist who passes his days in a dull but remunerative job at a ranch near Oaxaca. It is 1945, World War II has just ended, but those bloody events have had no impact on a country that is only on the cusp of industrializing. One day, more bored than usual, Demetrio visits a bordello in search of a libidinous solution to his malaise. There he begins an all-consuming and, all things considered, perfectly satisfying relationship with a prostitute named Mireya.

A letter from his mother interrupts Demetrio’s debauched idyll: she asks him to return home to northern Mexico to accompany her to a wedding in a small town on the edge of the desert. Much to his mother’s delight, he meets the beautiful and virginal Renata and quickly falls in love—a most proper kind of love.

Back in Oaxaca, Demetrio is torn, the poor cad. Naturally he tries to maintain both relationships, continuing to frolic with Mireya and beginning a chaste correspondence with Renata. But Mireya has problems of her own—boredom is not among them—and concocts a story that she hopes will help her escape from the bordello and compel Demetrio to marry her. Almost Never is a brilliant send-up of Latin American machismo that also evokes a Mexico on the verge of dramatic change.
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In 1945 Oaxaca, an agronomist named Demetrio Sordo regularly visits a prostitute named Mireya even as he pursues a more pure form of love in his correspondence with a girl from his hometown named Renata, until problems arise with the arrangement.

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