Third Reich by Roberto Bolao

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With passages that anticipate the dark, chaotic splendour of By Night in Chile, Udo's diary becomes a record of moral and psychological disintegration, swarming with toxic hallucinations and poignant non sequiturs.
-Guardian

Synopsis

Shortly after becoming the German war-games champion, Udo Berger and his girlfriend, Ingeborg, holiday on the Costa Brava. There they meet another vacationing German couple, Charly and Hanna, and a band of shady locals who introduce them to the darker side of life in the town. Then, late one night, Charly disappears without a trace, and Udo's well-ordered life is thrown into upheaval ...Frightened, Udo refuses to leave, even after Ingeborg returns home, and his increasingly feverish dreams push him into delirium. As everything slips beyond his grasp, he attempts to re-assert himself by engaging the enigmatic and severely disfigured El Quemado -- a foreigner who lives in a Spartan burrow on the beach -- in a days-long match of his favourite war game, Third Reich. But, too late to stop the madness, he realizes that the consequences of this game are much more serious than he ever imagined. Combining the exhilaration of The Savage Detectives with the darkness of his later work, The Third Reich -- Bolano's first new novel since the epic 2666 -- is a visceral book exploring memory, madness and violence. It is both the perfect way to discover the dazzling genius of Roberto Bolano and an unmissable addition to the oeuvre for those who already have.
 

About Roberto Bolao

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Roberto Bolaño was born in Santiago, Chile, in 1953. He grew up in Chile and Mexico City. His novel The Savage Detectives was chosen as one of the ten best books of 2007 by the Washington Post and the New York Times Book Review. His posthumous masterpiece, 2666, won the National Book Critics Circle Award.
 
Published January 1, 2012 by Picador USA. 288 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Third Reich
All: 3 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 1

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Giles Harvey on Jan 27 2012

With passages that anticipate the dark, chaotic splendour of By Night in Chile, Udo's diary becomes a record of moral and psychological disintegration, swarming with toxic hallucinations and poignant non sequiturs.

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Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Adam Mars-Jones on Jan 13 2012

It's not clear that anyone short of an expert could identify the book, neutrally well managed as it is, as Bolaño's work.

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Globe and Mail

Good
Reviewed by Stephen Smith on Sep 06 2012

...it’s compelling in a way that brings to mind W.G. Sebald and, yes, the aforementioned César Aira, who...is a craftsman of short, intense exquisitely absorbing literary artifacts that feel utterly authentic even as they mess with your expectations.

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