The Algarrobos Quartet

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University of New Mexico Press, 2002 - Fiction - 278 pages
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The Algarrobos Quartetis a series of four short, enigmatic novels set on the northern pampas of Argentina. In the town of Algarrobos, the rules of the game are mysterious, and terrible events occur without warning. Unexpected deaths remain unexplained. Soldiers attack innocent workers. Pampered doves die brutally as well, and a Biblical flood threatens to wash everything away. Most people in Algarrobos don't know why these things happen, and they don't want to know.

Puzzles and multiple meanings abound in Goloboff's writing. A central character is known as El Negro though he isn't black. In three of these Argentine Jewish novels only a few characters identify themselves as Jews. There are assimilated Jews, an old, broken-down Jewish cemetery, and some stories of the Jewish past. The fourth novel deals with Italian-Argentine anarchists.

These novels are a transmutation of reality, a veil, a facade. Goloboff's prose takes on multiple meanings, and the translation masterfully captures his use of language to evoke enigmas that challenge us to understand both the stories and how chaos and the unexpected engulf us all.

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About the author (2002)

Mario Goloboff teaches at the University of La Plata, Argentina.

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