Antipodes by Ignacio Padilla

Source – library

Translator -Alistair Reid

 

Ignacio Padilla is a mexican writer ,he grew up liking Joyce and Stevenson as a child ,he studied communication and got a masters in english literature .Eventually end up teaching hispanic american literature at university of Salamanca in spain .He is also with Eloy Urroz and Jorge Volpi part of the crack movement ,a new movement of writing from mexico to move on from the latin american boom movement ,by using complex literature ,different structural writing .

So that in mind what did I learn from Antipodes about Ignacio and the crack movement well this book is structured round a collection of twelve very short stories all about five or six pages long .There all sort of boys own stories ,sometimes funny sometimes reminding me of a collection I had adventure stories for boys and also the tv series ripping yarns where the stories were all slightly tall tales but based on real types of characters .The characters on whole tend to be English or ex pats and a lot of locations are in the English speaking world  from India to Scotland.Included in the mad adventures include rebuilding a copy of Edinburgh in the desert ,a man the may have climb Everest this reminded me of the great true story of George Mallory ,who was born near were I grew up so heard his story as a kid .Another is the one I quote from about a famous gun and how there were a number of fakes made of it at the time and how you could tell they were fakes .

There is no denying that the craftsmen of Cappadocia were extremely accomplished ,but anyone with half an eye could recognize an authentic Hutchinson – van Neuvel among the many pirated copies that have shown up in the armies of europe over the last five years .For a start the butt of the Hutchinson almost always carved from Fijian red oak ,weights exactly 3 pounds ,25 ounces and measures 15.4 inches from  the stock to the firing pin .

the opening of the short story ballistics :some notes .

Well its hard to say much twelve very short stories I did like them the brought to mind Bolanos nazi literature ,small insights and maybe Borges a brief history of infamy style wise .I liked them a lot like I liked the Borges and Bolano ,maybe flippish and no real story but jumping almost leaping in and pout these places and times getting a taste like A Tapas of Padilla style well if these are nibbles I m hook .If you want something to pass a cheerful hour or two try these little nibbles of Ignacio Padilla .Reid did a good job on the translation keeping the sense of fun at times in these tales .

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July 2011
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