This month I almost entirely read Spanish literature, only twice reading books not translated for the language (one of which, And the Money Kept Rolling In, was, to be fair, about the Argentinian debt crisis, so at least followed the theme). I quite enjoyed reading a single language for a month, having to force myself a little not to stray, and might try it another month at some point.
I read five novels and one novella, of which my favourite was Miguel Angel Asturias’ The President. I am also in the middle of a further five Spanish-language novels (Goytisolo, Carpentier, Sanchez Ferlosio, Pérez de Ayala and Cortázar – and I suppose Lezama Lima as well), and there are still plenty I wanted to read but never got around to. Two novels I started didn’t really enthuse me, Adolfo Bioy Caesares’ Asleep in the Sun and Juan José Saer’s The Sixty-Five Years of Washington.
I read short stories by Juan Valera, Pedro A de Alarcón, Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer, Eusebio Blasco, Carlos Coello, Emilia Pardo Bazán, Silvina Bullrich, Alejo Carpentier, Rafael Dieste, Wesceslao Fernández Flórez, Ánxel Fole, Pere Gimferrer, Juan Goytisolo, Alberto Insúa, Javier Marías, and Eduardo Mendoza. The last was my favourite, but since it was merely an excerpt from a novel (No News from Gurb), I’ll go instead for Marías’ decidedly Borgesian Gualta (and I’m not much of a Marías fan).
Next month I shall spend finishing books I’ve started, before the situation becomes untenable.