ABR reviews 'Requiem with Yellow Butterflies' by James Halford

An excerpt from Alice Whitmore's review of Requiem with Yellow Butterflies:

Requiem with Yellow Butterflies begins, aptly, with a death. Sitting at his office in Brisbane, the author receives news that Gabriel García Márquez has died at his home in Mexico. Across the world, there is a mushrooming of obituaries. Garlands of yellow butterflies are draped from trees and buildings; outside Mexico City’s Palacio de Bellas Artes, paper butterflies rain down like confetti. From Madrid, Elena Poniatowska eulogises: Gabo ‘gave wings to Latin America. And it is this great flight that surrounds us today and makes flowers grow in our heads.’

Gabo’s death is a catalyst for James Halford, in many ways. ‘As I read the memorials from around the world,’ he writes, ‘a spark of curiosity kindled.’ Halford, a diligent reader of García Márquez, begins to unpick the tightly wound threads of ‘mythomania’ that envelop the writer and his magnum opus, One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967), ‘the great twentieth-century Latin American novel’. The result is the first of fifteen deft chapters that drift seamlessly across the genres of literary essay, travelogue, and personal memoir, opening up new dialogues between Latin America (haunted Mexico; abandoned Paraguay; the humid midriff of Venezuela and Brazil; umbilical Cuzco; ‘eternal’ Buenos Aires), the coastlines and ‘unknown towns’ of Queensland, and the red desert of Australia’s interior.


Click here to continue reading.

Leave a comment:

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

Other articles:


Click here to see the range of titles we have on sale for half price this end of financial year!

Read More

Vale Professor Sylvia J. Hallam

UWAP is deeply saddened by the recent passing of Professor Sylvia Hallam FAHA.

Read More

Two UWAP authors shortlisted for 2019 WA Premier's Book Awards

We'd like to congratulate Amanda Curtin and Renee Pettitt-Schipp for their shortlistings in this year's WA Premier's Book Awards.

Read More

40% off across our entire poetry range!

UWAP has been publishing poetry since 2008. 

Read More

40% off selected visual art titles - this week only!

40% off selected visual art titles from May 20th to May 26th!

Read More