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Bonsái By Alejandro Zambra (Pdf) author Alejandro Zambra – TXT, Kindle eBook or Book Read

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Or «una historia liviana ue se pone pesada» un relato elíptico y vertiginoso marcado por la inuietante desaparición de una mujer Jorge Luis Borges aconsejaba escribir como si se estuviera redactando el resumen de una obra ya escrita Eso es lo ue ha hecho Alejandro Z. What does a resonating journal do Arrest us in the powerful aura of words Dispatch us to the comforting cocoon of our memories Render a blanket of dignity to our failures Exhort our fledgling dreams to a palpable fruition Cast a succor net on our isolated struggles Attest our timidity as a prelude to stronger daysFor me it s essentially about reading about a distant me the identity of this me to be an inhabitant of past corridors or a tenant of future roads being inconseuential As long as I detect a shade of me in the journal s evocation I am obsessed to read till the last drop of ink has faded And Zambra doesn t do anything much besides telling me a story about Julio who could well be sitting across me in this cafe and reciting the content verbatimA failed love story CheckDays without purpose CheckHappening life feigned CheckGaining foothold tediously CheckRandom loss of heart again CheckBreaking of heart again CheckMore days without purpose CheckUnexpected ray of light CheckRay of light extinguished CheckIsolation volunteered CheckFinding purpose fortuitously CheckUncommon unconventional purpose CheckPurpose uniting all other purposes CheckIt is wonderful when a long dark night is followed by the resuscitating ray of the morning sun In its blinding fold the venomous dew of defeats evaporate leaving behind the nurturing air for the bonsai of new hopes which sitting on the window sill eyes the world coyly with its delicate twigs of past learnings and present resolves fluttering to amalgamate in honor of its sturdy future When Zambra tells me that Julio found purpose in a bonsai after surviving inundating personal and professional hurricanes of losses and cessations I nod my head in concurrence for I know that the bonsai is after all a cojugal twin of heart miniature artistic has two components the living tree akin to blood and the container akin to the blood vessels and needs no external flanks to be alive As he says A bonsai is never called a bonsai tree The word already includes the living element Once outside its flowerpot the tree ceases to be a bonsai Is it an irony that when I begun writing this review the cafe was playing this track and now I am hearing this track Not really There is a smiling bonsai somewhere tucked in the corner here perhapsview spoilerOh I also loved this novel for a chapter when Julio and his girl Emilia discuss Proust Flaubert Baudelaire Nabokov and host of literary luminaries before making love What a high then hide spoiler

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Bonsái By Alejandro Zambra

Ambra en este libro ue del mismo modo ue un bonsái no es un árbol más ue una novela corta o un relato largo es una novela resumen o justamente una novela bonsái Bonsái supone el brillante debut narrativo del joven chileno Alejandro Zambra poeta y crítico literario. In the end she dies and he remains alone although in truth he was alone some years before her death Emilia s death Let s say that she is called or was called Emilia and that he is called was called and continues to be called Julio Julio and Emilia In the end Emilia dies and Julio does not die The rest is literature I only wanted a local short novel to read between transfers on my recent trip to Chile and I ended up with this precious gem of a poem in prose heavy with the memories of my own lost youth among books and movies and lost loves that I know nothing about today A poem dedicated to being young and careless and wasteful of the most precious moments of your life if you only had the wisdom to know it at the time A story about how literature intersects with life about how books brought them together and about how books where insufficient to save them from drifting apart An ode to the girl who lost her way and died much too young and to the boy who decides to grow up a tree in her memory When Julio fell in love with Emilia all the pleasure and suffering previous to the pleasure and suffering that Emilia brought him turned into simple imitations of true pleasure and suffering To analyze to deconstruct this novel seems like sacrilege to me It is intimate and painful and beautiful beyond the words that comprise it Beyond making a note to read one of the key short stories that define the relationship between Julio and Emilia and the reason Julio chooses to commemorate their love with a bonsai It is called Tantalia by Macedonio Fernandez and as I understand from the references it is about a couple that decides to use a house plant as a symbol for their love As I prepared to write some thoughts about my first Zambra experience I found myself checking old notebooks from my student days for fragments of poetry that I underlined in the aftermath of broken relationships I ll just leave them here as feuilles mortes from my own bonsai On and on the rain will fallLike tears from a star like tears from a starOn and on the rain will sayHow fragile we are how fragile we are Ne om aminti c ndva t rziude aceasta nt mplare simplade aceasta banca unde stamt mpla fierbinte l nga t mplaDe pe stamine de alundin plopii albi se cerne jarulOrice nceput se vrea fecundrisipei se deda Florarul APRIL is the cruellest month breeding Lilacs out of the dead land mixing Memory and desire stirring Dull roots with spring rain Les sanglots longsDes violons De l automneBlessent mon c urD une langueur MonotoneTout suffocantEt bl me uand Sonne l heureJe me souviensDes jours anciens Et je pleure Et je m en vaisAu vent mauvais ui m emporteDe del Pareil la Feuille morte

Alejandro Zambra ì 6 SUMMARY

Condenado a la seriedad y a la impostura Julio el silencioso protagonista de este libro acaba convenciéndose de ue es mejor encerrarse en su cuarto a observar el crecimiento de un bonsái ue vagar por los incómodos caminos de la literatura Es ésta como dice el narrad. What s the purpose of being with someone if they don t change your life There are some books that can be consumed in a singular hour yet remain within you to be digested by the intellect for days or weeks Alejandro Zambra s Bonsai is such a book The precise simplicity of the novel makes it a difficult book to talk as the novella feels as fragile as an intricately colored moth s wing admire its beauty but don t touch it lest it turn to dust There is a feeling of weightlessness to the prose and story that still manages to weigh heavy in the heart and soul upon completion It is the story of two young lovers lovers of one another and literature and what happens to them once they part It is as simple as that yet complex in its mechanics and implications Like the bonsai grown by Julio the story exists and flourishes within the confines of its literary container with Zambra s pristine prose trimming the limbs of love to enshrine it as a miniature work of art and beautyThere is a sweet simplicity and breathless fluidity to this tiny novel Characters silently sweep on and off the stage love is found and lost within the length of a paragraph revelations are made and people are lost forever all without rising from a soft idyllic tone that Zambra executes with the care of one polishing expensive glassware Broken into five short segments each comes like a delicate waves on the ocean each separate with their own emotional peak to crash onto our heart s shores yet all one body of literature moving together There is also a wry humor integrated in the otherwise somber plot that gives it wings and keeps it from plummeting into melodrama What is most impactful is the way that Zambra circles around the story yet never jabs his pen into it s heart keeping everything in the hazy peripherals of a story that need not be addressed head on as the reader already understands it s shape In the end Emilia dies and Julio does not die The rest is literature This is a novel of love but most importantly a novel about literature Zambra shows his hand plot wise from the very first sentence entrusting the reader to understand that this is an exercise of literature and that the from A to B plot is secondary a mere current of events to power the lightbulb of ideas There is a gorgeous character study at play Julio and Emilia two college students become lovers doomed to seriousness These two could be anyone symbols really for any two people connected by the emotional affinities that any couple is capable of discovering with only a little effort Much of the simplicity and the way Zambra refers to Julio and Emilia who are not exactly characters though maybe it s convenient to think of them as characters helps build a universal microcosm of relationships Anyone that has loved or loved and lost can find charm in the hazy tale Zambra has created Julio and Emilia lie to one another on their first sexual encounter both claiming to have read Marcel Proust and embellish the lies with partly true details to bring their falsehoods to life In a way they are creating literature and as their relationship continues full of lies and truths and half truths like any young couple they further their depth as characters both literally and metaphysically Any lover of literature is sure to be charmed by their sexual foreplay consisting of reading to one another from role playing Madame Bovary neither ever wanted to be Charles and the way they re read Proust together It is their reading of the short story Tantalia by Macedonio Fern ndez a story of a couple who fear the survival of their relationship is dependant on the life of a clover plant the unnamed woman gives the man as a symbol of love that gives them pause and reveals the mortality of theirs and all relationships Once outside its flowerpot the tree ceases to be a bonsai When Julio decides to grow a bonsai he discovers a few key lines in a care manual A bonsai is an artistic replica of a tree in miniature It consists of two elements the living tree and the container The two elements must be in harmony and the selection of the appropriate pot for a tree is almost an art form in itself The opening sentence in the end she dies and he remains alone becomes the container from which the story the the rest is literature grows and flourishes The people that come and go from their lives are like the limbs of the bonsai tree which are carefully cut to grow in a desired shape However the story itself is a series of containers Julio writes a novel about a man who learns of the death of a lost love this being before Julio learns of Emilia s death and grows a bonsai as a love plant in her honour the story of which later Julio will act out in his own life The story of the bonsai is the literature that grows from the container of Fernandez s story Tantalia and finds itself actually occurring on several levels of the narrative there is a doubling or tripling and so forth of meaning that all functioning in relation to one another a meta narrative style that works nearly like two mirrors reflecting back at one another with a bonsai situated between them The bonsai an artistic replicain miniature is then Julio s novel but also the novel itself with so many self referential aspects that it teases the reader into fantasizing an intentional fallacy and pondering if the Zambra wrote his novel in relation to Tantalia as did Julio and if the love plot has any half truths in Zambra s own life It is the intricate potting of a story within a story that really sticks with the reader the half truths of life that go on to become a work of art the literature housed in the container of experience Bonsai is a uiet little novel with uite the emotional punch It displays a budding promise for it s young author who would later make good on those promises with The Private Lives of Trees which I found to be even emotionally impactful What I love most is the way this novella makes literature seem like the most important aspect of life The fragility of life and love is explored in beautiful and breathless prose that makes this elliptical little novel well worth the time 3755 I want to end Julio story but Julio s story doesn t end that s the problem A big thank you to Mike and Matt for sending me Tantalia a uite insightful story that is also key to unlocking the heart of Zambra s own story


10 thoughts on “Bonsái By Alejandro Zambra

  1. says:

    ‘ What's the purpose of being with someone if they don't change your life?’There are some books that can be consumed in a singular hour yet remain within you to be digested by the intellect for days or weeks Alejandro Zambra’s Bonsai is such a book The precise simplicity of the novel makes it a difficult book to talk as the novella feels as fragile as an intricately colored moth’s wing—admire its beauty but don’t touch it les

  2. says:

    25 perplexed indifferent what is the fuss all about ? stars I am at a loss as how this book won Chile’s Literary Critics’ Award for Best Novel Was it a very bad year? Were there no other novels published? Were the critics all first year double majors in post modern literature and philosophy? I don't get itDon't get me wrongthis is not a poor book but I found nothing that interesting or moving or interesting or profound or inte

  3. says:

    Bonsai is the first piece of literature that I read in Spanish It was the right choice for me from the language point of view The narrative was simple and the vocabulary did not raise many difficulties I definitely recommend it if you are an intermediate Spanish learner and want to learn by reading However this novella

  4. says:

    And better still after the third reading If anyone is interested in reading this one and needs a copy of Macedonio Fernandez's Tantalia feel free to give me a shout and I'll email you the 5 page story prontoEven better after the second readi

  5. says:

    “What's the purpose of being with someone if they don't change your life” Alejandro Zambra BonsaïAlejandro Zambra’s Bonsai is as delicate as the miniature tree it’s named after It is a stunning accomplishment Zambra accomplishes in 86 pages what other writers take hundreds of pages to accomplish Just as the silence betwee

  6. says:

    What does a resonating journal do? Arrest us in the powerful aura of words? Dispatch us to the comforting cocoon of our memories? Render a blanket of dignity to our failures? Exhort our fledgling dreams to a palpable fruition? Cast a succor net on our isolated struggles? Attest our timidity as a prelude to stronger days?For me it's essentially about reading about a distant 'me' the identity of this 'me' to be an inhabitant of pa

  7. says:

    In the end she dies and he remains alone although in truth he was alone some years before her death Emilia's death Let's say that she is called or was called Emilia and that he is called was called and continues to be called Julio Julio and Emilia In the end Emilia dies and Julio does not die The rest is literature I only wanted a local short novel to read between transfers on my recent trip to Chile and I ended up wi

  8. says:

    IMAGINEImagine a book whose first sentence is a huge spoiler it summarizes the plot and tells you what will happen at the end Imagine a book which is a moving homage to literature and its ironic mockery at the sa

  9. says:

    A bonsai has to be nurtured and truly loved or else it will die; likewise unless one does the same thing with human love that will also dieThis is a philosophical thought provoking novella so I have a tautology here but I like it even though it’s extraneous as it adds necessary substance to the wording and I was charmed and delighted by it allThis is not really a novella but a short story and it can be read in little than an h

  10. says:

    She and he Macedonio’s characters had and lost a little plant of love Emilia and Julio—who are not exactly characters though maybe it’s convenient to think of them as characters—have been reading before shagging for months it is very pleasant they think and sometimes they think it at the same time it is very pleasant it is beautiful to read and talk about the reading just before tangling legs It’s lik