Meredith's Challenge 2.0

52 books, one year. Stay tuned for more details.

Monday, March 07, 2005

#3 Dreaming in Cuban by Christina Garcia

I've had a bit of an interest in all things Cuban since I read Cuban Diaries: An American Housewife in Havana by Isadora Tattlin last fall. That book is eye-opening. I don't know very much about Cuba, but from what I gleaned from Tattlin, it sounds like it's stuck in a crazy time warp. It almost makes me want to visit just to see the strangeness of it all; almost, almost. I also think that seeing the hardness of life there would make me too sad and gawking like a tourist seems a bit tasteless and horribly imperialistic. However, my budding fascination with the country still stands.

Dreaming in Cuban is a gorgegous, gorgegous book. The prose is so lush it made me want to sink into it. I might as well admit now that I am a huge sucker for beautiful, descriptive writing, split narratives, messing with chronology and ambiguous endings. Therefore, as soon as I finished this, I wanted to start it all over again, yet for the sake of the project I held myself back. I devoured Dreaming and at the end, I wish that I savoured it more, took it slower. I feel like I will be coming back to it, that a re-reading might reveal more than I got at first.

This quote in particular stayed with me: "... you have to live in the world to say anything meaningful about it." Like Pilar, I feel like I am waiting for my life to begin.


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