Sunday, March 3, 2013

BW10: Gadding about South America

Courtesy World

Where has the time gone? It's March and spring is around the corner. If you've been doing the Continental Challenge, the first couple months of armchair traveling has taken us down through Canada and across the Unites States.  I spent quite a bit of time hanging about the east coast, hiked part of the way up the Appalachian trail, meandered my way over to the west coast and baked into the deserts of California.   I'm ready to head down through South America and see what there is to discover.  Currently in my backpack is Hopscotch by Argentinian novelist Julio Cortazar and  The House of the Spirits by Chilean born author Isabel Allende. I'll surely discover more interesting authors and stories as wind my way down through the continent.

If you click on the Traipse through South America link in the linkbar up above, you'll find a couple books from each country (thank you Goodreads) based on setting that seemed interesting and will get you started if you don't know where to begin.  Wide Open Education lists the 20 Essential Works of Latin America Literature which includes  Pablo Neruda, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Isabel Allende and Julio Cortazar.  And to torture you some more,  Becca of Lost in Books has been doing a fabulous Take me Away series highlighting books from different countries and has so far done Argentina, Brazil, Chili, and Peru, that will have you adding more books to your wishlist.

Are you ready for a challenging readalong.  I am going to tackle reading Hopscotch first and a few 52 Bookers over on the Well Trained Mind forums will be joining in.  Readalong with us starting March 10th: 

Synopsis:  Horacio Oliveira is an Argentinian writer who lives in Paris with his mistress, La Maga, surrounded by a loose-knit circle of bohemian friends who call themselves "the Club." A child's death and La Maga's disappearance put an end to his life of empty pleasures and intellectual acrobatics, and prompt Oliveira to return to Buenos Aires, where he works by turns as a salesman, a keeper of a circus cat which can truly count, and an attendant in an insane asylum. Hopscotch is the dazzling, free-wheeling account of Oliveira's astonishing adventures.
And by free-wheeling, they mean a stream of consciousness book in which you can read in chapter order or follow the random pattern set out by the author.  Same as the title, you will be Hopscotching around. According to the Quarterly Conversation:

The most remarked-on aspect of Hopscotch is its format: the book is split into 56 regular chapters and 99 “expendable” ones. Readers may read straight through the regular chapters (ignoring the expendable ones) or follow numbers left at the end of each chapter telling the reader which one to read next (eventually taking her through all but one of the chapters). A reading of the book in that way would lead the reader thus: Chapter 73 – 1 – 2 – 116 – 3 – 84 – 4 – 71 – 5 – 81 – 74 – 6 – 7- 8, and so on. -

So be prepared to set aside all expectations, take your time, have a glass of wine or two and enjoy.  I intend to.

Link to your reviews:    Please link to your specific book review post and not your general blog link. In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field leave a link to your specific post. If you don't have a blog, tell us about the books you are reading in the comment section of this post.


  1. Oops! Typo there on my first listing. It is NOT a book about cows living in the Vatican. LOL!


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