Over the New Year’s weekend, I finished reading the novel, Love in the time of Chlorea, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, which is a story about the 50-year love triangle between Fermina Daza, Florentino Ariza and Doctor Juvenal Urbino set in the late 19th century.While, unlike my mother, I did enjoy the book, I can see how she found it to be painfully slow paced, and the main character, Floretino, extraordinarily whiney and pathetic. My mom stopped reading the book three-quarters though. Being very cognizant of my own obsession compulsion with finishing books I’ve begun, I asked how she could have possibly stopped, especially so close to the end, to which she simply replied, “life is too short.” And you really can’t argue with that.
I’ve always been interested in reading Love In the Time of Cholera, and those of you familiar with my favorite movie, Serendipity, will remember that the book itself is integral to the romantic fate of the film’s protagonists, Jonathan Trager and Sara Thomas. My interest for the book was piqued once again when I recently discovered that the novel had been adapted into a film. There seemed like no better time to finally pick up a copy and start reading.
I thought the plot was interesting, as I generally find non-Danielle Steel romance novels to be, but was overwhelmingly troubled by Florentino’s notion of love, and absolutely repulsed by his behavior, particularly his constant “whoa is me” sexual diversions. The man literally sleeps with half of the southern hemisphere (622 love affairs in all), all in the name of love, before declaring his steadfast love to an elderly widower, Fermina, his long-lost teenage love, to whom he falsely sings that he has always been true to her. I mean, puleease. I completely agreed with my mom that he is a whiney, pathetic, and a very sad little man. Some think this novel is a heart-warming story about the enduring power of true love. I say bullshit. Please do excuse my language. And don't get my wrong, I did like the novel, but despised Florentino with a passion.