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No es un río, Selva Almada

I wanted to expand my knowledge of contemporary authors and in a Google search, I found this book amongst many others of the top 20 Latin American novels in the past decade or so. I was intrigued, especially given it was an Argentine writer.

I’m not going to lie, it was a very slow start, and had I not been on a beach without any other distractions, I probably wouldn’t have stuck it out. But I’m glad I did because the storyline ended up being somewhat intriguing. This book is known for confusing what is a dream and what is a reality. This is what makes the novel stand out. Furthermore, there are no chapters. It’s just one long dialogue. The story revolves around many characters, primarily Enero, El Negro and Tilo, the son of their friend who died tragically: Eusebio. We learn about these men and how they interact throughout the story, particularly in the very beginning. Although it is a story based around men, we do learn about a few key female characters throughout the story. To me, their story was more interesting, and I connected more to it.

The book goes fast once you get through the first 20 pages or so, as it’s under 150 pages. Although it was by far my least favorite book of the ones I’ve reviewed, I’m glad I tried it. It’s great, too, if you want to learn more about the voseo and Argentine slang. I would recommend it for university students or higher, as the slang and some of the vocabulary would make it harder to follow. If you want a challenge or like me, to try something new, then grab a copy of this book today!


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