Bolaño is a master of controlled rambling. Like the conductor of a train that was thrown together by a child whose father turned his back on the model kit, but no worries, the tracks were assembled by the manufacturer and well-maintained. The train rides like the story of a beggar waiting to receive a wealthy merchant’s coin, only to be sidetracked by the tales of each content of the latter’s pocket, which may include a sci-fi adventure that leads to the grocery store receipt’s origin and/or the tear jerker legend of the movie stub. To top it off, the choo-choo’s points of departure (beggar) and arrival (merchant) are as equally fascinating and off-brand as the journey. Cowboy Graves is both a short, sweet intro to Bolaño’s style and a must-get for the completionists.
One more journey to the universe of Roberto Bolaño, an essential voice of contemporary Latin American literature
Cowboy Graves is an unexpected treasure from the vault of a revolutionary talent. Roberto Bolaño's boundless imagination and seemingly inexhaustible gift for shaping the chaos of his reality into fiction is unmistakable in these three novellas. In "Cowboy Graves," Arturo Belano--Bolaño's alter ego--returns to Chile after the coup to fight with his comrades for socialism. "French Comedy of Horrors," takes the reader to French Guiana on the night after an eclipse where a seventeen year old answers a pay phone and finds himself recruited into the Clandestine Surrealist Group, a secret society of artists based in the sewers of Paris. And in "Fatherland," a young poet reckons with the fascist overthrow of his country, as the woman he is obsessed with disappears in the ensuing violence and a Third Reich fighter plane mysteriously writes her poetry in the sky overhead.
These three fiercely original tales bear the signatures of Bolaño's extraordinary body of work, echoing the strange characters and uncanny scenes of his triumphs, while deepening our reverence for his gifts.
About the Author
Roberto Bolaño (1953-2003) was born in Santiago, Chile, and later lived in Mexico, Paris, and Spain. A poet and novelist, he has been acclaimed "by far the most exciting writer to come from south of the Rio Grande in a long time" (The Los Angeles Times), and as "the real thing and the rarest" (Susan Sontag). Among his many prizes are the prestigious Premio Herralde de Novela and the Premio Rómulo Gallegos. He is widely considered to be the greatest Latin American writer of his generation. His books include The Savage Detectives, 2666, The Spirit of Science Fiction, By Night in Chile, Distant Star,Last Evenings on Earth, and The Romantic Dogs.
"Bolaño's brilliant oeuvre expands with another bright starburst, this one comprising three separate yet thematically connected novellas...Bolaño's inimitable style and searing vision will appeal to fans and new readers alike." -Booklist
"Each story reveals a centrifugal writer with a brilliant command of words and no fear of a plot’s getting away from him." -Kirkus