On Monday the 16th of this month we held our favourite event, the CL, which in Spanish literally stands for “Círculo Literario”. We basically pick a book from our library and invite the writer to participate. Vis-à-vis, communication becomes fluent, and we can “dig characters, target, story, historical time and motivation out”. This time, the CL went for Dos monstrouos juntos, by Boris Izaguirre.
The event was held in this cosy, discreet restaurant. Excellent food, relaxed atmosphere and charming Boris were the key-ingredients for success. Nobody wanted to miss it and was eager to make questions, simply because Dos monstruos juntos is a very unique piece of work, portraying present times from an apparently “frivolous” point of view. In fact, behind his sharp remarks, at times hilarious, at times caustic, Boris proceeds with a serious, merciless analysis of th, carefully itemizing the grounds to worldwide financial disaster. Once again, Boris shows his vocation for social chronicle. As he would say, it is “a sour chronicle of present times”.
Important subjects of general interest are openly dealt with. Among many others, we can know Boris opinion on:
Corruption: The story tells us how hard, critical times bring corruption afloat. Boris’ motivation to write the novel was to show readers how easy it is to get corrupted. As Venezuelan-born, he “has a nose” to detect it..
Racism: Grandma Graziella is a good example on how to fight it, showing what a “queen of glamour” with the looks of Pocahontas can do.
“Addition” to beauty habits and surgery. Boris mocks at the corruption-body hair inverse relationship: the more corrupted the more hair-free. Plastic surgery is illustrated with grotesque pictures of uncontrolled, crazy over-operations.
Natural disasters: hunger and poverty, and the “indifference” of wealthy countries towards the problems of the weakest.
The creativity-business conflict: unfortunately, creativity is all too often measured uniquely and solely by success.
We liked “Dos monstruos juntos” mainly because of its:
- Originality: within an unexpectedly chaotic scenery – actually a restaurant, where and in his own words “anything might happen anytime, and everything actually happens everyday, and just anyone might show up”-, fiction and non-fiction mix together, like an Essay in a Novel’s disguise.
- Eccentric characters, whose profile might seem sometimes grotesque, sometimes stereotyped, with “cloudy”, uncertain backgrounds in most cases. Patricia’s omnipresence seems to “eclipse” the story.
- Boris’ continuous jumping in and out of the novel. At the end of the day, it is his own novel, and he is entirely entitled to do whatever he likes with it.
- Sense of humour, especially when he laughs at himself.
- Sharp, agile prose. Action does not simply take place but “speeds up” all through the book.
- Type: Urban-Contemporary Novel
- Time: 9.2008 to 4.2010
- Place:Barcelona,New York,London,Vienna,Edinburgh,Haitiand….Vigo!.
- Historical fact:London, 2008, the world financial crisis has just officially begun with the fall of Lehman Brothers as starting point.
SOMETHING TO REMARK
Lucía Higgins’ laughable portrait: pathetic, decadent, but “essential” in certain type of social pulpits.
FURTHER READING: Pues yo lo veo así: Sobre la crisis económica y más.., by Xavier Sala i Martín; Freakonomics, by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner
READABILITY RATE: B2-C2 – normal to difficult. The readability rate of index tells us about the reading difficulty degree or level for non-native speakers. Native speakers can also benefit from this benchmarking.
 According to the “Common European framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)” of the EEC,: