I wanted to read Roberto Bolaño for a long time but didn’t have the courage. In our recent bookstore visit with friends, his name came up. All my friends forced me to buy his books. But instead of 2666, I bought Distant Star.
The reason why I didn’t start the Bolaño literature with 2666 is the advice of a friend who knows the effect of books on me. I will discuss this again when I read 2666 (despite everything). Now let’s go back to Roberto Bolaño and Distant Star.
Roberto Bolaño is one of those brilliant authors. He knows where and how to hit and impress the reader. Some of the characters in Distant Star are the kind I’ve never seen before. This is a book in which you can feel the hard wind and the hail storm. If you want to take a look at the coup period in Chile from a different perspective, you have to read it. Enjoy!
An unnamed narrator attempts to piece together the life and works of an enigmatic would-be poet turned military assassin during Pinochet’s regime in Chile. In the early 1970s, Alberto Ruiz-Tagle was a little-known poet living in southern Chile. After the military coup of 1973 that brought in the dictatorship of General Pinochet, he embarked upon a new career that involved him in committing murder and other brutalities, and subsequently led to his emergence as a lieutenant in the Chilean air force under his actual name, so Carlos Wieder.
Sometime later the narrator, now held in a prison camp, looks up and sees a World War II airplane writing the first words of the Book of Genesis in smoke in the sky. The aviator is none other so Carlos Wieder, launching his own version of the New Chilean Poetry…
Roberto Bolano’s novel is a chilling investigation of the fascist mentality and the limits of evil, as seen in its effects on a literary sensibility, as well as a gripping intellectual thriller.
Roberto Bolaño Ávalos was a Chilean novelist, short-story writer, poet and essayist. In 1999, Bolaño won the Rómulo Gallegos Prize for his novel Los detectives salvages, and in 2008 he was posthumously awarded the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction for his novel 2666, which was described by board member Marcela Valdes as a “work so rich and dazzling that it will surely draw readers and scholars for ages”.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: