Now reading One Hundred Years of Solitude... Amazing book. I was under the impression that Marquez's books were for the 'bookish' guys and gals. It took some courage to take it down from the library shelf, and I was pleasantly surprised when I started reading it. I found it extremely readable, and at places, quite funny. At some other places it's a bit silly too. I'm enjoying it throughly anyway.
I want to know this - has Marquez written some other good books, or is this his only good one? I've not heard nice things about his other books. I want to try them too, once i finish this one. Though I'd ask you people first.
We're doing Marquez's The General in his Labyrinth this year in college. Its about Simon Bolivar's last days. You might check it out but I'll admit its nothing like 100 Years.... I found the book decaying, since its about a man who's dying. Like death is coming yet its being stalled and slowly and painfully the book moves ahead.
Love In the Time of Cholera has a few of the same themes as One Hundred Years (circular nature of time, illness, ladidah), although I didn't like it quite as much.
Chronicle of a Death Foretold is brilliant and much shorter, so perhaps you should try that one first.
What do you think about Marquez's techniques, like the use of magic realism? I really thinks there are few to rival him and if anyone's there i feel it might be Salman Rushdie (just read Satanic Verses)
Just as an aside - you should be saying Garcia Marquez as that is his full surname. His boos should be under G in the fiction section - I always use that as a good test of how good a bookstore it is!
But to get to the stories - make sure you read his non-fiction as well. Gabo spent many years as a reporter, and has a brilliant way of describing true crime. Notas de un Secuestro (news of a kidnapping) and Relato de un naufrago (story of a ship wrecked sailor) are from each end of his writing career and are both brilliant.
And his short stories are worth reading as well.
Some of the magic realism that people wax lyrically about, are in many cases the result of wobbly translation - much like those 1970s french films. When I read him in Spanish, it seems much more real than in English. But that said, I can never eat ice cream without thinking about Colonel Aureliano Buendía.