Love in the Time of Cholera
Author: Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Publisher: Vintage Books
My Rating: 6,5/10
My reading time: 4 weeks!
Summary via Goodreads
In their youth, Florentino Ariza and Fermina Daza fall passionately in love. When Fermina eventually chooses to marry a wealthy, well-born doctor, Florentino is devastated, but he is a romantic. As he rises in his business career he whiles away the years in 622 affairs–yet he reserves his heart for Fermina. Her husband dies at last, and Florentino purposefully attends the funeral. Fifty years, nine months, and four days after he first declared his love for Fermina, he will do so again.
The reason I bought this book is because I stumbled upon A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings, a short story from Marquez that teaches me the power of twist ending in a story. After a few delay, I finally decided to buy one of his book, I just typed his name in Amazon and see A Love in Time of Cholera as the first suggestion. Without checking the review in Goodreads, I directly pressed the button to buy. I thought, a very well-known novel of a Nobel Prize winner could never go wrong.
But then i was wrong. I give this book 6/10 for the sake of beautiful writing. Five points for the classic writing, one for the great setting and half point for the wicked plot. Who doesn’t admire Marquez for his style of writing? His perfect diction and strong tone of voices (through the narrative!) in this novel are things that make this novel alive. I also can’t put this novel away (even though I often tired reading this novel because nothing seems to happen after hundreds of pages) because of the wicked plot was arranged smartly. Not to mention, I can witness the beautiful Caribbean Sea for half of century.
The irony is, I dislike this novel because of the wickedness itself. I do not agree that the love of Florentino Ariza and Fermina Daza is being potrayed as a true love! I mean 622 affairs, come on! Florentino Ariza indeed waits for Fermina Daza’s love for half of century, but is that true love? Not for me. Within those 622 affairs, there are also disturbing stories that delivered impeccable. And those 622 affairs somehow could not erase Florentino’s innocence figure, so he could still be the hero for Fermina Daza in her old days.
I read this novel hoping to meet the true meaning of love in the old times when people have to struggle for a plague. But then I didn’t see anyone really suffer from Cholera, I didn’t feel the plague was around and ruin everybody’s life and love. If this novel is really about Cholera, the story should be centered in Dr. Juvenal Urbino’s life(Fermina Daza’s husband). The story should be about how he tempered his wife with his true love and finding the cure for the cholera.
If you want to read this book because the sake of Gabriel Garcia Marquez or you want to see how is life in the time cholera, it is better for you to not read this, because you might not really amuse with what you read. I, myself will continue my book journey with Marquez’ short stories and his great novel One Hundred Years of Solitude.
So, what is your impression after reading my review? Have you read this book or another Marquez’ works?
Let me know