On the eve of his 90th birthday, a bachelor decides to give himself a wild night of love with a virgin. As is his habit - he has purchased hundreds of women - he asks a madam for her assistance. The 14-year-old girl who is procured for him is enchanting, but exhausted as she is from caring for siblings and her job sewing buttons, she can do little but sleep. Yet with this sleeping beauty at his side, it is he who awakens to a romance he has never known.
Tender, knowing, and slyly comic, Memories of My Melancholy Whores is an exquisite addition to a master's work.
What made the experience of listening to Memories of My Melancholy Whores the most enjoyable?
My first book from Senor Marquis was "Chronicles Of A Death Foretold". It was in a Playboy Magazine great books review. That was 25 years ago, and I have not missed a word he has written since. This book is further testimony of his great skill and eloquence with language and the powerful range of events he has lived or seen lived and sculptured in poetic, exotic colors and sounds of a rain forest.
What other book might you compare Memories of My Melancholy Whores to and why?
What about Thom Rivera’s performance did you like?
He captured well the voice and rhythm of GGM.!
If you could rename Memories of My Melancholy Whores, what would you call it?
Excercise Manual For Men Of 90 Years
Any additional comments?
3 of 4 people found this review helpful
As a Cuban it's PC for me to say that Spanish writers tend to be way to melodramatic and with too big an air of self-importance. What saves the story is that it is leveled off with the honesty of some of the characters imperfections and insecurities. Not really my kind of story but had to try because of the "legend" of Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But legend or not the story about a "dirty" old man is more pitiful than great.
4 of 7 people found this review helpful
What did you like best about Memories of My Melancholy Whores? What did you like least?
I didn't like the idea that the guy wanted to have sex with a young virgin, but I did like that in the end he didn't do it.
How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?
I have no idea. Honestly, I loved the writing, but the subject matter was a little squicky. I don't know if I could change it and still keep anything similar.
What does Thom Rivera bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
I liked his rusty voice. It made picturing the character easier.
Was Memories of My Melancholy Whores worth the listening time?
Ultimately, yes. It wasn't a long book, and it was interesting, if not the most favorable material.
Any additional comments?
Not as good as the other Gabriel Garcia Marquez works!
1 of 5 people found this review helpful
What disappointed you about Memories of My Melancholy Whores?
Pictures formed in my mind of wrinkled hands of a 90yr old man caressing a 14yr old girl made me cringe throughout the book. What is more disturbing is the implication that the girl is initially hurt by the old man not having "de-flowered" her in their first naked meeting!! Rather than relieved!! And it goes on with this narcissistic illusions of this old man with the woman-pimp informing him that the girl is madly in love with him. Errr, did I miss an irony intended here by Marquez?? If you can stomach the repulsive erotic scenes this book offers a lot of life wisdom about old age and life.
Would you ever listen to anything by Gabriel García Márquez again?
Absolutely, he is a magnificent writer
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Short and sweet, humorous story. An interesting version of a love story. I recommend this book.
A wonderfully intimate story of a nonagenarian who finds love in the shape of a young teenage girl he was intending to deflower.
Now, I'll be the first to admit that this Lolita-esque storyline does not sound terribly appealing. And there were many times, when I was listening, that I felt deeply uncomfortable about the tone and implications. However, this is classic Marquez and not everything is as it seems and we have to be careful about judging a story set in 1920s(?) South America with 21st century Occidental sensibilities.
Whilst it is easy to get hooked up on the paedophiliac aspects, the primary driver for this tale is an old man facing up to death and I found myself reflecting upon my own mortality because of it.
Thom Rivera reads this audiobook in sublime fashion. His accent is perfect for the piece, still wonderfully clear and gives it a distinct flavour.
Apart from the uncomfortable subject matter, my main criticism with this book is its relatively short length. I know it is a novella but one felt that the story could have been expanded upon. As a crude simile, it was like enjoying several slices rather than a whole cake.
Still worth a nibble though.