Book Review: Until August by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

“When a woman leaves there is no human or divine power that can stop her.”

― Gabriel García Márquez, Until August

Gabriel García Márquez, a Colombian writer, released his work Until August in March 2024, following his death. The publication of it occurred on March 6, which is his 97th birthday.

Synopsis from Goodreads...

The extraordinary rediscovered novel from the Nobel Prize–winning author of Love in the Time of Cholera and One Hundred Years of Solitude

Sitting alone beside the languorous blue waters of the lagoon, Ana Magdalena Bach contemplates the men at the hotel bar. She has been happily married for twenty-seven years and has no reason to escape the life she has made with her husband and children. And yet, every August, she travels by ferry here to the island where her mother is buried, and for one night takes a new lover.

Across sultry Caribbean evenings full of salsa and boleros, lotharios and conmen, Ana journeys further each year into the hinterland of her desire and the fear hidden in her heart.

Constantly surprising, joyously sensual, Until August is a profound meditation on freedom, regret, self-transformation, and the mysteries of love—an unexpected gift from one of the greatest writers the world has ever known.

My reaction to the novel...

I haven't read any books by Gabriel Garcia Marquez yet, so I don't have high expectations. I just really want to read a different kind of story, and since I saw this and got curious about the book cover, I immediately started reading it. I feel like it falls under the thriller genre, which is why I was drawn to it. I still haven't read any reviews about this book before diving in, so I really don't know what the story is about. I just feel like reading it because of its book cover, so whatever the story is, I'll just go with it.

I can say as a reader that the author's writing style and approach are okay. He used simple and easy-to-understand words, making it easy to read continuously. Honestly, even though I'm busy with work, I finished this book in just three days, which is quite impossible for me nowadays. But because the words used were straightforward, I didn't realize I was already close to finishing it. I just have a few parts that I really don't like.

The story is about an affair. The main character is too adventurous, especially considering her age. Personally, I find the story a bit off, making me wonder why it happened. The woman also appears promiscuous, as she keeps getting involved with different men every August, and I don't understand how she can tolerate being passed around like that. Can she really do it in front of everyone without even flinching or being scared of what she's doing? She seems pathetic and her behavior is vulgar to me. I didn't like reading it because of this. I just put up with it since I make a sincere effort to finish anything I start and don't just stop reading. Due to the fact that I had already begun reading it and felt compelled to complete, I ultimately finished what I had read. The main character is a shallow, self-centered lady who only consumes others surrounding her, which is why I found it so upsetting.

Fortunately, it's a brief story with no obvious moral that I could find. Anyway, I have only just now tried reading a book authored by Marquez, even though I was somewhat disappointed with this story. Nonetheless, I am still interested in reading other books written by him.

Honestly, I can't recommend this book, especially to young people. There's really no lesson to be learned, just a lot of worldly things happening, like the main character repeatedly making the same mistakes, which is similar to what her mother does. It's a bit confusing in that part, so I didn't really like it. It might be better if I just read a different book of his.

My Overall Rating: ⭐✨(1.5/5)


Disclaimer: Booksreadbyhannel is not a business website. The opinions expressed here are unbiased and based only on my own feelings and reactions while reading the books I featured here in my blog. My reviews reflect my utmost sincerity. I paid for the books I review here out of my own pocket. Books provided by authors and publishers are otherwise specified.