Hamble Campbell's Home Page

An occasional window on Hamble Campbell's world.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

What's outside the window?

Well, this evening I finished Roberto Bolano's novel The Savage Detectives and I will say right away that I absolutely loved it.

Fat books are usually a bit too much bother for me, but I was somehow so fascinated by all the buzz that surrounded the publication here in Britain of 2666 that I actually bought both books. As a rule I never buy fiction, but I couldn't wait for the library.

Although The Savage Detectives fills 570 plus pages, I was not tempted to read the last chapter, or skip ahead, or any of the other naughty things I usually do when confronted with a book that is not slim. I read the whole lot and I recommend it to you most positively.

Don't read on if you have not read The Savage Detectives yet, I don't want to spoil anything for you...


If you have read it already, I can hear you asking, "What meaning did the cryptic ending convey to me?" Well, I thought the window frame had been punctured by something, letting in beams of light. Maybe bars had been removed, or maybe the fabric of the building had suffered some violence. I read on another website that perhaps the series of dashes or hyphens represented a "cut along the dotted line" instruction. What a clever idea, I wish I had thought of that.

Anyhows, I've got the massive 2666 to tackle next. But I've got to finish The Arabian Nights (translated by Haddawy, both volumes, first, which I put on hold to read Bolano. Wish me luck.