Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Return

by Roberto Bolaño

I hadn't realized there was a Bolaño story in this issue of Harper's, or I would have read it ages ago.  The Return is not like the other work I've read from this amazing author.  It tells the story of a man who dies one night at a nightclub in Paris, but whose spirit lingers, staying with his body.  That is, until a pair of orderlies take his body to the home of Jean-Claude Villeneuve, a famous French fashion designer, who the first paragraph of the story tells us is a necrophiliac.

This is a pretty short story, lacking in the usual excesses of Bolaño's lengthy sentence structures.  Instead, he focuses on telling his story simply, and with adequate description.  It's by no means one of his more brilliant pieces of work, but it is unique and enjoyable.

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