Goodreads Monday is a weekly meme that was started by @Lauren’s Page Turners. This meme is quite easy to follow – just randomly pick a book from your to-be-read list and give the reasons why you want to read it. It is that simple.
This week’s book:
I, The Supreme by Augusto Roa Bastos
Blurb from Goodreads
Latin America has seen, time and again, the rise of dictators, Supreme Leaders possessed of the dream of absolute power, who sought to impose their mad visions of Perfect Order on their own peoples. Latin American writers, in turn, have responded with fictional portraits of such figures, and no novel of this genre is as universally esteemed as Augusto Roa Bastos’s I the Supreme, a book that draws on and reimagines the career of the man who was “elected” Supreme Dictator for Life in Paraguay in 1814.
By turns grotesque, comic, and strangely moving, I the Supreme is a profound meditation on the uses and abuses of power—over men, over events, over language itself.
Why I Want To Read It
While browsing through the albums and collections of an online bookseller, Augusto Roa Bastos’ I, The Supreme immediately captured my attention. The first thing that captured my attention was the book cover. The domineering face reeked of both power and authority that I had to take a second look.
Roa Bastos was an author who I’ve never encountered before until I browsed through the said bookseller’s album. It’s one of the reason why I enjoy browsing through the bookseller’s collection – I always encounter names and books I wouldn’t normally encounter in a typical bookstore. Upon researching more about the book and the author, I have learned that it depicted one facet of Hispanic history and society – the emergence of dictators and authoritarian leaders.
South and Central America (including the Caribbean) does have that compunction for dictators. Chile’s Augusto José Ramón Pinochet Ugarte, Cuba’s Fidel Castro, Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez, and Dominican Republic’s Rafael Trujillo are just among the names that have made their mark in history. In fact, Hispanic America’s endless love affair with dictators was captured in many a literary work such as Isabel Allende’s works, Junot Diaz’ The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s The Autumn of the Patriarch.
With all of this said, I am worked up for ,I The Supreme for it takes me to a setting I have never been to before in my long literary journey: Paraguay. I know that it is a landlocked nation in South America but I barely have an iota about its history and I am hoping that I, The Supreme would fill in the gaps. I do feel that it is going to be a dark and heavy read but knowing the brand of eccentricity that Latin American writers have, I know I am in for a treat. Or not.
How about you fellow reader, what book do you want to read? I hope you can share it in the comment box. For now, happy reading! Have a great week ahead!