The Adventures and Misadventures of Maqroll
by Alvaro Mutis, introduction by Francisco Goldman, translated from the Spanish by Edith Grossman
Maqroll the Gaviero (the Lookout) is one of the most alluring and memorable characters in the fiction of the last twenty-five years. His extravagant and hopeless undertakings, his brushes with the law and scrapes with death, and his enduring friendships and unlooked-for love affairs make him a Don Quixote for our day, driven from one place to another by a restless and irregular quest for the absolute.
Álvaro Mutis’s seven dazzling chronicles of the adventures and misadventures of Maqroll have won him numerous honors and a passionately devoted readership throughout the world. Here for the first time in English all these wonderful stories appear in a single volume in Edith Grossman’s prize-winning translation.
And if you want to change your life—for the better—and have never read the Colombian novelist Álvaro Mutis, you owe it to yourself to get acquainted with The Adventures and Misadventures of Maqroll. A collection of seven novellas that can be read at a run or singly, it features the greatest rainbow-chaser since Quixote, but a lot sexier and ravenous for both learning and love, not to mention fantastical, doomed schemes to make a pile of loot.
— Simon Schama, The Guardian
Mutis is one of the greatest writers of our time.
— Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Though each of these entertaining and elegant novellas can stand on its own, the cumulative effect is of an epic novel. Mutis is a writer of the first order, and he is well served by Edith Grossman's translation. I admire his work very much and can only encourage others to read him.
— Oscar Hijuelos
Recalls Joseph Conrad. And one can think of Maqroll himself not only as a Byronic figure but also a male counterpart of Isabel Allende's Eva Luna; both are spellbinding storytellers.
— Boston Globe
Three elegant, linked novellas fusing the dream-like imagery of Gabriel Garcia Marquez with the dark undercurrents of Joseph Conrad.
— San Diego Union Tribune
This tidy paperback volume, exactly seven hundred pages, with a warm and informative introduction by Francisco Goldman, has the supple heft of a newborn classic, a latter—day Don Quixote whose central persona, both amusingly shadowy and adamantly consistent, moves around the globe somewhat as the Knight of the Sorrowful Countenance traversed the plains of Spain.
— John Updike, The New Yorker