The Old Man Who Read Love Stories Book reviews


Author(s): Luis SepúlvedaDownload  


In a remote river town deep in the Ecuadoran jungle, Antonio José Bolívar seeks refuge in amorous novels. But tourists and opportunists are making inroads into the area, and the balance of nature is making a dangerous shift. Translated by Peter Bush.

Some Reviews: 1241 in


Virencia rated it      

Beautiful. Fable-like. Teasing off human’s greed & ignorance brought by colonialism at large, an epic of old man & the forest at heart.


Amy rated it     

Interesting little novella, covering themes of the destruction of the rain forest and the Amazon, the examination of cultures, the joy of escaping into reading and making a place in the world, even if the spot you are in is not where you originated. I found myself alternately thinking of Hemmingway (the sparseness of the writing, the poignancy depicted, and the old man in the title) and Gabriel Garcia Marquez, maybe from the lushness of the land and the depiction of the world. It has the feel of a fable.

The old man of the story, a widower, lives on the edge of the Ecuadorian jungle where he lives and interacts with the Indians there. A thoughtless trader sets off a rampage by a mother ocelot, the old man, who loves reading love stories, is pulled from his peaceful world and forced to become part of the hunt for the enraged cat.

I know there was a movie made of this, with, I think, Richard Dreyfus as the lead, but he is so far from my mental picture of the main character that I can promise you I shall not be in a rush to ever see it.


Diana rated it      

I have read this book twice and the second time I read it I liked it even more. This is the story of a man who lives in “El Idilio” next to the Amazon rainforest and he really enjoys reading Love stories. By reading the book you’ll get to know the story of this man and how he became one with the jungle. I love this book because it talks about how man and nature become one being and how a man can learn to know himself by interacting with nature. It also reveals the strengths and weaknesess of the main character and how he deals with the political situation of his village: he is very smart and creative in confronting the authorities. This book is full of humour, some suspense, love, action, respect for the nature and it is an example of how we can enjoy ourselves as time takes our years away.


Barbarac rated it      

UPDATE 2017: 5 estrellas. El libro me gusto muchisimo mas en espan/ol. Que diferencia. La traduccion al ingles pierde todas las frases bonitas que usa el autor, que son casi todas.

2012: 4 Stars. Great short book about Jose Antonio Bolivar, a man that has lived most of his adult life in the jungles of Ecuador, partly with the Shaur, an Amazonian indian tribe. Now old, he’s enjoying his quiet life, reading love books, when he’s asked by the unlikeable mayor of the town to go on a hunt.
I wish I had read it in Spanish, but unfortunately couldn’t get a copy.
This book contains a strong message to stop destroying the Amazon.

Basila Hasnain

Basila Hasnain rated it     

It was a book my reading-guardian angel chucked at me 🙂 truly out of nowhere I found my self purchasing this book leaving a classic for another time. I dont test my taste nor do I experiment with my reading time but this one- it was gripping in true sense of the word, one sitting two hours, beautiful and enchanting like the jungle. Its the rare read people like me experience only once in a while- I read page after page for the sheer joy of experiencing the quest of the hunter.
Plot cant be more well knit than this. It was the plot , the way the story unfolds-after all how many times we get curious at 30
Loved it


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