The Savage Detectives

The Savage Detectives

Book - 2007
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New Year's Eve, 1975: Arturo Belano and Ulises Lima, founders of the visceral realist movement in poetry, leave Mexico City in a borrowed white Impala. Their quest: to track down the obscure, vanished poet Ces#65533;rea Tinajero. A violent showdown in the Sonora desert turns search to flight; twenty years later Belano and Lima are still on the run.

The explosive first long work by "the most exciting writer to come from south of the Rio Grande in a long time" (Ilan Stavans, Los Angeles Times ), The Savage Detectives follows Belano and Lima through the eyes of the people whose paths they cross in Central America, Europe, Israel, and West Africa. This chorus includes the muses of visceral realism, the beautiful Font sisters; their father, an architect interned in a Mexico City asylum; a sensitive young follower of Octavio Paz; a foul-mouthed American graduate student; a French girl with a taste for the Marquis de Sade; the great-granddaughter of Leon Trotsky; a Chilean stowaway with a mystical gift for numbers; the anorexic heiress to a Mexican underwear empire; an Argentinian photojournalist in Angola; and assorted hangers-on, detractors, critics, lovers, employers, vagabonds, real-life literary figures, and random acquaintances.

A polymathic descendant of Borges and Pynchon, Roberto Bola#65533;o traces the hidden connection between literature and violence in a world where national boundaries are fluid and death lurks in the shadow of the avant-garde. The Savage Detectives is a dazzling original, the first great Latin American novel of the twenty-first century.

Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007
Edition: First American edition
ISBN: 9780374191481
Characteristics: 577 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Additional Contributors: Wimmer, Natasha
Alternative Title: Detectives salvajes


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Oct 26, 2014

Take your time with this one. The first section reads quickly but at the start if the second part, Bolano throws the brakes. However, if you stick with it you will be taken through a multilayered depiction of some of the most radical poets ever!

Feb 08, 2012

Great book! Recommended for anyone interested in the art of writing, and especially latino literature.

Mar 21, 2011

I gave up this book after the first section, which I thought was tedious. It wasn't interesting to me to read characters debating the merits or faults of poets I don't care about for page after page. If you were *really into* Lat. Am. poetry, you would probably like this book. But, I looked at some other reviews and one guy who *liked* this book even said that the second section is "labyrinthine, and sometimes aimless", so I'm glad I gave it up when I did. So many books, so little time - so I'm not slogging miserably through this one!


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