Love in the Time of Cholera

Gabriel García Márquez

Book cover

This is one of the few books remaining on our shelves at home, and I picked it up after Marquez’s death. It took me a little while to get into, but I ended up liking it much better by the second half. Overall, though, I still have mixed feelings about it, and in a way still feel like I am trying to sort out what I think about it–which I guess at least is a sign of its depth. Florentino Ariza is neither a very likeable character nor a very realistic character, and in a way he is not a very deep character either–we observe some of his inner life, but it is essentially a caricature of his everlasting romantic longing. Fermina Daza and Dr. Juvenal Urbino both seem like much deeper characters to me, but we don’t get to see as much of their inner lives, which I think is too bad–the parts that focus on their relationship are among the best parts of the book, to me. One might see the book as an exploration of the idea of love, but I think it would fall short in that role. The love between FA and FD is quite fantastical in nature, and GGM does emphasize this, I think, through the environment in which it is finally achieved. The book explores sexual desire and chivalric romance, but not the kind of love that is the foundation of good lives and families. So it is an exploration of some ideas of love, but not the ones that are most interesting to me.

My Goodreads rating: 3 stars