George Moseley, January 1, 2013 (view all comments by George Moseley)
I have been familiar with his name for a long time. I just now began to read his work, starting with this book. It takes my breath away. He had one of the most complex, imaginative, wide-ranging minds that I have ever encountered. Some of his literary themes are a little repetitive. So what. The stories here are short - 10, 2-3, or half a page. If you like to be challenged, and to have your mind stretched, please read Borges.
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by Harold Bloom,
"It is a deep pleasure to read the Collected Fictions of Borges in Andrew Hurley's capable new versions. Old favorites like 'Death and the Compass' and 'The Immortal' are revivified by Hurley. There is also a particular satisfaction in having all of the stories in one volume."
by Umberto Eco,
"Though so different in style, two writers have offered us an image for the next millennium: Joyce and Borges. The first designed with words what the second designed with ideas: the original, the one and only World Wide Web. The Real Thing. The rest will remain simply virtual."
by Publishers Weekly,
"Undeniably one of the most influential writers to emerge in this century from Latin America or anywhere else, Borges (1899-1986) is best known for his short stories, all of which appear here for the first time in one volume....Elusive, erudite, melancholic, Borges's fiction will intrigue the general reader as well as the scholar."
by Mavis Gallant, The New York Times Book Review,
"To discover the fictions at midcentury was stunning. There was no one like Borges. Everything else, for a short time, seemed predictable and beside the point."
by Phoebe-Lou Adams, The Atlantic Monthly,
"A Borges invention can start anywhere, hint at unlikely sources, and proceed by pseudo-banal routes to unprecedented goals; it always takes the reader on a roller-coaster ride into some previously unsuspected dimension. This collection of the great magician's work is a new translation and includes one piece never before put into English."
by Jamie James, The Wall Street Journal,
"The erudition that enriches the fictions is certainly dazzling, as much at home with medieval Arabic science as with the classics of philosophy and literature, yet it embraced the folkish and popular as well....This collection is a valuable contribution to the English-language bookshelf of world literature, long overdue."
by Richard Bernstein, The New York Times,
"This...collection of the complete imaginings of the Argentine writer...is an event, and cause for celebration."
by Michael Dirda, The Washington Post Book World,
"Serious students of Borges must obviously still learn their Spanish, but the rest of us can be reasonably satisfied with Hurley's Collected Fictions. Yet I wish it had been a fuller, more scholarly book, its versions more convincingly definitive and superior to earlier ones. That said, it nonetheless contains the major work of probably the most influential Latin American writer of the century..."
by Chicago Tribune,
"An unparalleled treasury of marvels."
by San Francisco Chronicle,
"An event worthy of celebration....Hurley deserves our enthusiastic praise for this monumental piece of work."
by Kirkus Reviews,
"[T]hese witty, colorful tales...have exerted an incalculable influence on the past half-century's fiction....Gloriously ruminative and bookish....Authoritative testimony to the virtues of eclecticism and cosmopolitanism, and a matchless gift to readers that belongs, as the old saying goes, in every library."
by Library Journal,
"What a thrill to find old favorites — 'The Circular Ruins,' 'Pierre Menard,' 'The Library of Babel' — updated and boxed with lesser-known gems. An exciting publication event and an indispensable acquisition for all libraries."
The complete fiction of Jorge Luis Borges, whom Nobel Prize winner Mario Vargas Llosa calls “the most important Spanish-language writer since Cervantes”
A New York Times Notable Book
The International Bestseller
For the first time in English, all of the best Latin American writer Jorge Luis Borges’s dazzling fictions are collected in a single volume in brilliant new translations by Andrew Hurley. From his 1935 debut with The Universal History of Iniquity through his immensely influential collections Ficciones and The Aleph, the enigmatic prose poems of The Maker, up to his final work in the 1980s, Shakespeare’s Memory, these enigmatic, elaborate, imaginative inventions display Borges’s talent for turning fiction on its head by playing with form and genre and toying with language.
For some fifty years, in intriguing and ingenious fictions that reimagined the very form of the short story, Borges returned again and again to his celebrated themes: dreams, duels, labyrinths, mirrors, infinite libraries, the manipulations of chance, gauchos, knife fighters, tigers, and the elusive nature of identity itself. Playfully experimenting with ostensibly subliterary genres, Borges took the detective story and turned it into metaphysics; he took fantasy writing and made it, with its questioning and reinventing of everyday reality, central to the craft of fiction; he took the literary essay and put it to use reviewing wholly imaginary books.
Commemorating the 100th anniversary of his birth, this edition at last brings together all of Borges’s magical short stories. Collected Fictions is the definitive one-volume compendium for all those who have long loved Borges, and a superb introduction to the Argentine master’s work for those who have yet to discover him.
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