Love in the Time of Cholera

Love in the Time of Cholera

3.7 236
by Gabriel García Márquez

ISBN-10: 0307387143

ISBN-13: 2900307387140

Pub. Date: 10/30/2007

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

Set in an unnamed Caribbean seaport, Garcia Marquez's extraordinary Love in the Time of Cholera (1988) relates one of literature's most remarkable stories of unrequited love. "This shining and heartbreaking novel," Thomas Pynchon wrote in The New York Times Book Review, is one of those few rare works "that can even return our worn souls to us."

Mary Wesley

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Set in an unnamed Caribbean seaport, Garcia Marquez's extraordinary Love in the Time of Cholera (1988) relates one of literature's most remarkable stories of unrequited love. "This shining and heartbreaking novel," Thomas Pynchon wrote in The New York Times Book Review, is one of those few rare works "that can even return our worn souls to us."

Mary Wesley on Garcia Marquez's Love in the Time of Cholera:

"This is the funniest, most moving book I have read and re-read. Each reading discovers fresh delights, a true classic. Garcia Marquez is the greatest South American writer who doesn't hesitate to write of the spiritual and mundane in the same paragraph."

Product Details

Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
Vintage International Series
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Love in the Time of Cholera 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 236 reviews.
L.Emerson More than 1 year ago
This is the most gorgeous book I've ever read, not just for the plot, which is interesting, but because it is written with the highest level of storytelling skill. I thoroughly loved it. Readers looking for more than just a good book will be well satisfied. The most discriminating critics, wanting to give their time over only to a true work of modern literature, will find it here.

It was originally written in Spanish, and was probably a wonderfully crafted piece of literature in the author's native language. After all, it did win the Nobel Prize. But I believe a tremendous amount of credit for the lushness of this work in this, its English version, belongs to the unsung translator who did an absolutely stunning job. Like most of us, I've read translations of other works that seemed a bit clunky or repetitive. But this one was masterful, every page containing new descriptions that leapt off the page with bright clarity and clever originality.

The Mexican, Caribbean and South American locations described in the book came to life in vivid detail. Yet for all its exotic richness and scope, the story is still very accessible, the emotions universal, relatable. Characters are developed, a wide gamut of tempers and passions flair all over the place, scenes build across the pages with crescendo. It is even funny at times. I doubt the movie came close to this depth of storytelling. If you saw the film and didn't care for it, don't hold it against the book.
Cornelius_Kneejerk More than 1 year ago
But then it isn't supposed to be. To all of you who are disappointed by this novel or "don't get it" it's because you are falling into Marquez's "trap". This book is not a love story, but more a treatise on the subject of love "in all its many forms". The central relationship between Florentino and and Fermina owes more to Nabakov's Lolita than it does to Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. It's the way Marquez tells the story that is such a joy, to be savoured and enjoyed.
Guest More than 1 year ago
After much fanfare by Oprah Winfrey and several weeks on various bestseller lists, I had high expectations for Gabriel García Márquez's Love in the Time of Cholera. However, I found this story to move as slowly as a snail stuck to a glue board. Dense descriptions interfered with the plot. García Márquez's fifth novel is set in a 19th-century fictional South American port city. A young telegraph operator, Florentino Ariza, carries on a romance¿through an exchange of love letters only¿with the beautiful but rebellious Fermina Daza. When Fermina¿s father finds out about the relationship, he sends his teen-aged daughter away. Upon her later return, Fermina no longer has feelings for Florentino Ariza and marries the respectable Dr. Juvenal Urbino, a man who the reader is twice told likes to eat asparagus and smell the odor of it in his urine. Despite being spurned by Fermina, Florentino Ariza continues to pine for her for over 50 years, on occasion almost stalking her. He claims to be saving himself for Fermina but has affairs with hundreds of women. During this period, the reader is often treated to Florentino¿s intestinal ailments and his need for enemas. At one time, Florentino considers pursuing his secretary, Leona Cassiani, and she him, but when she is raped on the beach by an unknown assailant who, we are told, provided her with the best sex she ever had, she no longer has any desire to bed Florentino Ariza. Instead, she walks the beach at night hoping her rapist will ravish her again. As a woman, I was insulted by this passage in the novel, a passage only a man could write. And I was shocked that Oprah Winfrey, a woman who has been so open about her own sexual abuse, could recommend a story in which a character felt this way. Quill says: Don¿t bother taking Love in the Time of Cholera to the seashore this summer it¿s one book you can leave on the shelf.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This novel is LUSH and RICH.  One can get lost in the heady scent of a true master. Unfortunately, like Nobel prize winner William Faulkner, this reading requires the reader to reflect, re-read and digest the amazingly descriptive prose; Oprah's only "mistake" in some of her book club choices is that the average reader , often wants a shallow tale that requires little cultural knowledge and even less reflection.
Peachball More than 1 year ago
When Oprah raved about this book and teared up over the ending...I thought, "I have to read this." Well, I did. From cover to cover, hoping that eventually I would get to the part(s) she raved about. I found nothing interesting at all in this book. I thought it was boring and I really found the love story hard to believe. It was quite a disappointment. I was eager to start a new and "lighter" book immediately.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved the book. It was a great story and I enjoyed it very much. Didn't want to put it down. One of my favorite books written by Gabriel Garcia Marquez...I recommend it to all...
Anonymous 8 days ago
One of the most boring books I've ever read I kept waiting for something to happen or for the book to end Thankfully the book ended
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Grace_Concienne More than 1 year ago
At the beginning of this book i was a little creeped out, it started very weird talking about a corpse covered laying on a bed with a dead dog tied to the leg of the bed, that definitely doesn't draw readers in.It was weird in the way Florentino Ariza talked about his love, Fermina Daza, he never truly explained why he loved her so much. When the first woman took his virginity from him and he decided to have endless sex with random sex partners, even an underage girl whom he is related to, that confused me the most, why if he loved her would he want to do that. Florentino was thought of as a lowly gross man, possibly homosexual, and Fermina was married to a highly respected doctor and her father was proud of her, i dont understand how she could want to still be with him after all he has done with other women. Then when she finds out her husband has been cheating on her she stays with him anyways like this girls got some serious issues. I know she has two children with this guy but hes been cheating on her for a long time. The day her husband dies she sails off with Florentino and is banished to sail the river forever, this is the most messed up love story ive ever read. But there were some positives to this book, when they exchange love letters in secret it goes back to a simple love story and one that doesnt make me feel disgusted. When they get caught exchanging letters they seek out someone to help them get the letters to each other which is a sweet gesture of love even though she is married it isnt quite cheating like her husband, Dr. Juvenal Urbino, had been doing. When her father makes her take the trip when she is sixteen to make her forget about Florentino it seemed like a crazy thing for her father to do at that point in the book because he wasn't a sex addict maniac yet he was just a young boy but her father could tell he was not going to be good for his daughter and he was right, so he did what had to be done. But he died before he could completely rid her of Florentino for good. The author over all did an alright job with this book but it could have been better. The ending i would have prefered would have been Fermina thinking back on all her loved ones who had died, her father, favorite aunt and husband, they all had warned her or tried to stop her from being with this man even if the aunt had helped get notes to him she did not fully believe he was good for her and she was banished for helping her talk to Florentino and ended up dying. If she had thought about all of that and thought it through she probably would have decided to make her children and father proud by denying Florentino once again and moving on with life and being a widow and taking care of her children (or child since her daughter was banished for talking about her mother's “affairs” with Florentino)  but instead she was banished to the river never being allowed to dock on land ever again. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Amazing read, easy to fall into the world of this book. No problems here. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
TRS1 More than 1 year ago
I read this story and was pretty impressed by it. Is it at times sappy? Yes. Is it at times morally questionable? It depends on your point of view. Finish it to the end and you will be left with a sense of, "Awww, that's sweet." There are some genuinely funny moments as well as sad. Florentino and Fermina feel real enough to touch, and the writing makes you feel like you ARE in the Caribbean experiencing civil unrest and the hot summer nights.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of my absolute favorites of all time.
Pretend_Spoon More than 1 year ago
Incredible, gorgeous. Gabriel Garcia Marquez is without equal. 
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Proustlover More than 1 year ago
An almost perfect book truly evocative of its time and place.
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RobertMark More than 1 year ago
The heat of Columbia echoes the feelings burning between the characters of this modern classic.
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