On November 10 the last great novel man will ever write will be published in English. What do you mean last great novel? Don’t you consider the works of Clive Cussler and Norah Roberts great?
( No, I consider their works heresies to the world of letters; they deserve nothing less than an excommunication from literature. )So who is a great writer? Well to be completely honest I fear none may be alive today; the days of fantastic literature are long gone. The world of literature has been replaced with bestseller lists, spy-novels, book clubs and the self-improvement genre.
The last great writer died in 2003; he was of Chilean descent and his name was Roberto Bolaño. He has acquired every possible award in the Spanish language, and could have won more if it wasn’t for his untimely death. His last book to be published (“The Savage Detectives”) was highly acclaimed by the New York Time’s Book Review and was ranked one of the best books of 2007; a true masterpiece. A beautiful depiction of humanity where the true colors of life are not painted with achievements but with struggles, friendships and the understanding of love. Why should I preach onto you? Pick up the book for yourself.
I fear “The Savage Detectives” will be nothing compared to “2666” (expected to be on your favorite book store shelf on November 11) a lengthy novel already being hailed as one of the greatest of our time. This is a novel with a slew of characters only his great mind could compose; so real and yet so magical. No this is not of the magical realism genre, nor is it comparable Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s “100 Years of Solitude”. That judgment is to come, and that judgment can only be made once the entire world has been empowered by this novel. Only once his masterpiece has been unveiled only then can he be catapulted to the ranks of great Latin writers, only then can he stand tall next to Borges, Cortazár and Marquez. Don’t wait for “2666” to see what all they hype is; you can pick up his novels “The Savage Detectives”, “Amulet” and, my personal favorite, “By Night in Chile” today at any bookstore.