Friday, June 8, 2012

Memoirs, Pablo Neruda (translated by Hardie St. Martin)

I'll start out by saying this about the days and years of my childhood: the rain was the one unforgettable presence for me then. 

Sounds a lot like someplace I know...

Anyway, Pablo Neruda was a Chilean, so it's not really surprising that he and Isabel Allende have similar writing styles in their prose, especially when writing about Chile. This memoir had its moments (like when Neruda was living in Southern Asia), but I also found myself skimming over some of it. Neruda describes his childhood and his country, and as I said, parts of it were pretty good, but then again parts of it were not so good. Definitely the part about Asia was the best, especially about his pet mongoose that he had in Sri Lanka. However, his prose just didn't seem alive compared to Allende for some reason. I know, I know, you're saying: Pablo Neruda was a famous and wonderful poet!!! And I say this: I'll stick to his poetry. His prose isn't that great. Okay, but not great. (And it didn't motivate me to write a long review either.) I did find a quote in it that is on one of my journals though: "Poetry is an act of peace. Peace goes into the making of a poet as flour goes into the making of bread." I don't know if I quite agree with that though...

Read Memoirs:
  • if you like memoirs
  • if you like Pablo Neruda's poetry and want to read his prose
  • if you like Chilean literature
350 pages.
Okay book, but it left me wanting more!

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