Tag Archives: Spanish

El Conde Lucanor
Don Juan Manuel

As a collection of stories, El Conde Lucanor was bound to have some highlights and some lowlights, but the low outnumber the high, and the high aren’t as high as a reader would hope…

Selected Religious Poems of Solomon Ibn Gabirol
Solomon Ibn Gabirol

Solomon Ibn Gabirol was born in Malaga, around the year 1021. When he was sixteen, he began a poem, “I am the Master, and Song is my slave…”

Leopoldina’s Dream
Silvina Ocampo

The stories in Leopoldina’s Dream are, for the most part, concerned with strange, terrible things that go unnoticed by most people, because they take place in the world of children…

Don Quixote
Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

The book Don Quixote is about an older man (I like to think early to mid fifties) who decides that he is a knight, in an era (early 17th century Spain) that no longer has any knights. He sallies forth with his neighbor, Sancho Panza, whom he calls squire, and does various things like attack windmills he fancies to be giants. All of that stuff is in the book, but it turns out to be much more than that…

The Swindler
Francisco de Quevedo

The Swindler details the life of a boy named Don Pablos (though he takes on various other names throughout the course of the novel) as he struggles to become a gentleman, despite his low birth (his father is a thief, and his mother a witch [and it’s intimated that they’re Jewish, which, at the time, was “bad” [history and its racism!])…

Lazarillo de Tormes

When I say Lazarillo de Tormes is worthwhile, I want you to understand that the book is sixty pages long. Sixty pages! You might be able to read it aloud to a child without them getting bored!

Love in the Time of Cholera
Gabriel García Márquez

The plot is old, as far as plots go, but the story is told lovingly, and the writing is quite moving, if you let it do what it does, so to speak…

Of Love and Other Demons
Gabriel García Márquez

I was absolutely transfixed by this book. It totally blew me away—to the extent that I could barely comprehend what I was reading…

The Adventures of the Ingenious Alfanhuí
Rafael Sánchez Ferlosio

The Adventures of the Ingenious Alfanhuí is a kind of children’s book, in that the main character is a child, and the chapters are very short (two to five pages). Beyond that, though, this is a book that can be profitably read by anybody—except, perhaps, for very young, non-precocious children, ironically…