Sat, 03 Jun, 2023

Book Club Members Share Their Thoughts on One Hundred Years of Solitude

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"One Hundred Years of Solitude" is an astounding novel by a great writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez. After reading this novel only one thing comes to mind, "Best novel that I have ever read". It is basically a drama set of family generations whose entire life story is written by a gypsy. Each letter and each chapter of the story is so precisely demonstrated that the readers are amazed with every sentence of the novel. If soul really exists then this novel serves as an eye opener for each man's soul. Each character reflects an image of extraordinary contemplation.  It is not a book but a soulful peace of art whose magical existence can be felt after reading the novel.

Plot of the novel rather seems confusing and entangled, with events showcasing unexpected surprises. It is basically a tree of generations, which starts with Josè Arcadio Buendía and his wife Ursula, who move into undiscovered land of Macondo along with other immigrants. They reinvent their lives from scratch.  This book takes its reader to an adventure, cumulating everything so analytically. Our mind gets momentum as if we were an immortal person watching their lives hatch, grow and decay in front of our eyes.

It is a novel which touches upon every aspect of life, be it family, relationship, integrity, intimacy, love, passion, responsibilities or others. Generally, prejudice can be found among readers that the most difficult part of any novel is its use of vocabulary. But the case is totally different in this novel; characters and their names are the most difficult part as they have similar names. As the family tree passes through many generations demonstrating rise and fall of humankind, each character experiences solitude within himself/herself.

Solitude is revealed in dissimilar pattern for each character. Some experience solitude through loneliness, while some through betrayal. This novel implies every little detail such as strong sexual desire towards his/her own sibling and love, wizened poverty and extreme wealth, death and existence of soul, magic and reality. It takes us to a conscious state of reality through science and logic accompanied by magic. This is story of a town, which passes through pandemic disease that in reality can never be communicable.

Every little detail is an undiscovered treasure in itself. Some characters are wild and avaricious while some are calm and peaceful.  However, there are many catchy aspects of the novel and can only be justified if one chooses to read it.

-Nikita Gautam

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One Hundred Years of Solitude is one of the greatest novels by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. The novel is a bit difficult to understand with lots of characters and the similar names of characters makes it even more complicated to understand. The novel revolves around the activities of Buendia family. The novel is about love, war, beauty, power, family and magic. It is also about the evolution of family into society. The story is unpredictable as it changes after every page. The story is about family. Problem arises in every family but family always sticks together. The power of beauty, the belief in magic, the unusual relationships between brother-sisters, etc. are some wonderful features of the book. The book is about believing in oneself for achieving the goals of life. Life is not easy; it is about sacrifices for the family, for love, for beauty and for sake of society. The story continues and keeps readers engaged till the end because the true story is never revealed until the end. The book is interesting and makes the readers imagine the society of Macondo.

-Neesha Dhungana

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If I have to comment on the novel “One Hundred Years of Solitude” in a sentence then I would say “A complex novel with a basic reality”.  It is the masterpiece of the writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez who has successfully given birth to different characters and none of the characters are centralized. Also, the novel does not flow linearly which makes it more complex and beautiful at the same time. Complexity is added also by the similar names of different characters.

This novel reveals the history of Macondo village and tells the story of five generations of Buendia family. Garcia explains the story of more than a century if it is to be calculated in time. All the major events of life like births, deaths, love, marriage, etc... that a human will experience is described with the best possible use of language in the novel.  An excerpt from the novel:

 “He sank into the rocking chair, the same one in which Rebecca had sat during the early days of the house to give embroidery lessons, and in which Amaranta had played Chinese checkers with Colonel Gerineldo Marquez, and in which Amarana Ursula had sewn the tiny clothing for the child, and in that flash of lucidity he became aware that he was unable to bear in his soul the crushing weight of so much past.”

-Umesh Dhungana