Friday, October 4, 2019

Dinner by César Aira

by César Aira
translated by Katherine Silver

Published: 2006
Publisher: New Directions Paperback
Genre: Novella, Magical Realism, Zombies, Argentina, Coronel Pringles
Paperback: 101
Rating: 4

First sentence(s):
My friend was home alone, but he invited us over for dinner anyway; he was a very sociable man--liked to talk and tell stories, though he wasn't any good at it; he'd get the episodes mixed up, leave effects without effects, skip over important parts, and drop anecdotes right in the middle.

Was it a nightmare―the result of a bad case of indigestion―or did something truly scary happen after dinner in the Argentine town of Coronel Pringles?

One Saturday night a bankrupt bachelor in his sixties and his mother dine with a wealthy friend. They discuss their endlessly connected neighbors. They talk about a mysterious pit that opened up one day, and the old bricklayer who sometimes walked to the cemetery to cheer himself up. Anxious to show off his valuable antiques, the host shows his guests old windup toys and takes them to admire an enormous doll. Back at home, the bachelor decides to watch some late night TV before retiring. The news quickly takes a turn for the worse as, horrified, the newscaster finds herself reporting about the dead rising from their graves, leaving the cemetery, and sucking the blood of the living―all somehow, disturbingly reminiscent of the dinner party.

My two-bits:
This quick gory zombie feast read got me thinking of the realities of living.

And, what of relationships with people?


* weekly theme: ¡VIVA! Annual Celebration of Latino Hispanic Heritage
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