The Cardboard House

The Cardboard House

3.0 2
by Martin Adan
     
 

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A sweeping, kaleidoscopic, and passionate novel that presents a stunning series of flashes — scenes, moods, dreams, and weather— as the narrator wanders through Lima.Published in 1928 to great acclaim when its author was just twenty years old, The Cardboard House is sweeping, kaleidoscopic, and passionate. The novel presents a stunning series of flashes &

Overview

A sweeping, kaleidoscopic, and passionate novel that presents a stunning series of flashes — scenes, moods, dreams, and weather— as the narrator wanders through Lima.Published in 1928 to great acclaim when its author was just twenty years old, The Cardboard House is sweeping, kaleidoscopic, and passionate. The novel presents a stunning series of flashes — scenes, moods, dreams, and weather— as the narrator wanders through Barranco (then an exclusive seaside resort outside Lima). In one beautiful, radical passage after another, he skips from reveries of first loves, South Pole explorations, and ocean tides, to precise and unashamed notations of class and of race: an Indian woman “with her hard,shiny, damp head of hair—a mud carving,” to a gringo gobbling “synthetic milk,canned meat, hard liquor.”Adán’s own aristocratic family was in financial freefall at the time, and, as the translator notes, The Cardboard House is as “subversive now as when it was written: Adán’s uncompromising poetic vision and the trueness and poetry of his voice constitute a heroic act against cultural colonialism.”

Editorial Reviews

César Aira
““Wonderfully youthful, poetically miraculous, The Cardboard House is the most representative — and the best — of the Latin American avant garde of the 1920s.””
Mario Vargas Llosa
““This book is profoundly realist, but it is not a reproduction of exterior reality;it is rather the poetic, sensorial, intuitive, non-rational testimony of this reality.””
Roberto Bolaño
““I dreamt I was sixteen and Martín Adán was giving me piano lessons. The old man’s fingers, long as the Amazing Rubber Man’s, plunged through the floor and played a chain of underground volcanoes.””
Cesar Aira
“"Wonderfully youthful, poetically miraculous, The Cardboard House is the most representative — and the best — of the Latin American avant garde of the 1920s."”
Roberto Bolano
“"I dreamt I was sixteen and Martín Adán was giving me piano lessons. The old man’s fingers, long as the Amazing Rubber Man’s, plunged through the floor and played a chain of underground volcanoes."”
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``Most critics have given up looking for any thematic or narrative development'' in The Cardboard House , maintains Silver in her introduction. If readers alike are willing to do without any thread connecting the fragments of this prose poem-novel, they will probably enjoy the richness of Adan's imagery and the musicality of his language. Written between 1924 and 1927, when the Peruvian author was in his early 20s, and first published in 1928, the narrative's detailed descriptions of his native landscape and its people exhibit Adan's talent and foreshadow his success as an important Latin American poet, if not his skill as a novelist. Lyrical fragments--rarely more than three pages in length--contrast the city of Lima with the surrounding countryside; link the sea, the sky and the people; and catalogue the first loves of the narrator and his friend Ramon. Together the youths walk the streets of Lima by day, observe changes wrought by the influx of foreigners, love and lose girlfriends, and ponder the meaning of life with youthful hope and fear. this last sentence doesn't add anything new. I think we need a wrap-up, though.ws As a stream-of-consciousness diary of sensual and emotional experience, this is an interesting study of a poetic sensibility. (June)
Library Journal
The Cardboard House ( La casa de carton, 1928) is the first and only fictional piece by Peruvian poet Rafael de la Fuente Benavides (1908-85), publishing under a pseudonym. Written when the poet was 18, the novel became a landmark in national letters for its distinctive spatial and temporal treatment of the author's childhood neighborhood, which became a metaphorical and poetic Peru. The author, better known for his experimental ``anti-sonnets,'' belongs to the vanguardist movement of Peruvian post-modernism. In this classic Bildungsroman with strong echoes of Marcel Proust, Adan's expressionist techniques presage the complex Latin American narrative of the future. Silver comments on her work as translator in the short introduction. The present English version is the only translation of this work. -- Rafael Ocasio, Agnes Scott Coll., Decatur, Ga.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780811219594
Publisher:
New Directions Publishing Corporation
Publication date:
09/25/2012
Pages:
120
Product dimensions:
5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Katherine Silver is an award-winning literary translator and the co-director of the Banff International Literary Translation Centre (BILTC).

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Cardboard House 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
From author to author, here are some pointers: First of all, it was SOOOOOOOOOOOOO much better. My former MMMMEEHHHH is now changed to a sweet! However, here are some tips: Think of a pen name for yourself. Nothing like your real name, that's boring. I know an XY, and a Rootflower. My name is Starstruck. Something like that catches reader's attention. Be as clear as possible. I get tripped up on this sometimes, too: you have everything planned out; it makes sense in your head. But you forget major parts to it, like setting or the character's name. To a person who can't read your mind, this is pretty confusing. Keep that in mind. Ad descriptively, and often. Every time a chapter comes out, spread the word. This will ensure that followers know about the latest development, and that new people read. Don't be afraid to let your personality shine through! Whether you're ading or writing the real thing, no one wants to read a story that goes like this: She saw a monster and stabbed it. Blood spewed everywhere; or go to a story that ads like this: read my story at sfdf. Part infinity is out. They like this: Suddenly, a horrible monster sprang from the undergrowth! It gave a roar, but I swiftly silenced it permenently with a swing of my sword that sent its head rolling. Or this: Do you like waffles? Too bad. Read my story at sfdf. I finally finished part infinity! The ladies loooooove it! Hope you're not offended. I don't want to sound like Gildroy Lockhart from Harry Potter, but I hope you take my advice. Good job, though! Keep it up!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago