"This delightful book provides readers a key to more than one secret room of Borges's magical worlds."--Mahmoud Darwish
"Alberto Manguel is to reading what Casanova was to sex."--Scotland on Sunday
"His stories about Borges . . . [are] wrapped in luminous poetry."--The Toronto Star
Winner of the 2003 Prix du livre en Poitou-Charentes.
In 1964, in Buenos Aires, a blind writer in his sixties approached a sixteen-year-old bookstore clerk and asked if he would be interested in a part-time job reading aloud. The writer was Jorge Luis Borges, one of the world's finest literary minds; the boy was Alberto Manguel, who was later to become an internationally acclaimed author and bibliophile.
Manguel's reflections are part memoir, part biography, and all celebration of the living quality of literature. A moving portrait of an enigmatic genius, replete with deep insight into Borges and the writers he most admired.
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According to Borges admired adolescence Anglo-Saxon Arabian Nights Argentine armchair asked Bioy Casares Bioy's blind Boetius boina Borges recalled Buenos Aires Zoo Bustos Domecq cadenced called catalogue Circular Ruins colour confessed conversations dark detective fiction detective novel Dona Leonor dream dreamer encyclopaedias English epic Evaristo Carriego eyes fantastic Ficciones fiction film forgettable Funes Geneva German Groussac Hector Bianciotti Heine Homer hoodlums idea imagined immortality Jorge Luis Borges Kipling labyrinth language later laughing lector lion tamer listened low bookcases Macedonio memory metaphor mirrors nadie National Library never nightmare noche once Orbis Tertius Oscar Wilde paragraph Paul Groussac Peron Pierre Menard poem Poema poet Pygmalion quote reader realm recite sagas says Shakespeare shelves sister Norah someone sometimes Soto Spanish story talked tango tell tiger translation unclean lips universe verses Victor Hugo voice volumes walking want to remember words writer wrote Xul Solar