The Resource Affections, Rodrigo Hasbún ; translated by Sophie Hughes

Affections, Rodrigo Hasbún ; translated by Sophie Hughes

Label
Affections
Title
Affections
Statement of responsibility
Rodrigo Hasbún ; translated by Sophie Hughes
Creator
Contributor
Author
Translator
Subject
Genre
Language
  • eng
  • spa
  • eng
Summary
  • "Inspired by real events, Affections is the story of the eccentric, fascinating Ertl clan, headed by the egocentric and extraordinary Hans, once the cameraman for the Nazi propagandist Leni Riefenstahl. Shortly after the end of World War II, Hans and his family flee to Bolivia to start over. There, the ever-restless Hans decides to embark on an expedition in search of the fabled lost Inca city of Paititi, enlisting two of his daughters to join him on his outlandish quest into the depths of the Amazon, with disastrous consequences. Set against the backdrop of the both optimistic and violent 1950s and 1960s, Affections traces the Ertls's slow and inevitable breakdown through the various erratic trajectories of each family member: Hans's undertakings of colossal, foolhardy projects and his subsequent spectacular failures; his daughter Monika, heir to his adventurous spirit, who joins the Bolivian Marxist guerrillas and becomes known as "Che Guevara's avenger"; and his wife and two younger sisters left to pick up the pieces in their wake. In this short but powerful work, Hasbún weaves a masterfully layered tale of how a family's voyage of discovery ends up eroding the affections that once held it together"--
  • "A haunting novel about an unusual family's breakdown--set in South America during the time of Che Guevara and based on the life of Third Reich cinematographer Hans Ertl"--
Member of
Storyline
Tone
Writing style
Character
Review
  • /* Starred Review */ In his English-language debut, Bolivian novelist Hasbún weaves together a fictional tale about a real-life family struggling to find stability in a world of shifting ideologies and relationships. In the aftermath of WWII, the Ertls emigrate from Germany to Bolivia, settling in La Paz, where they live in relative bliss. That is, until the family patriarch, Hans, once the cameraman for a Nazi filmmaker, sets out with a video camera and two of his three daughters to find the lost Amazonian city of Paitití. They fail, and when they return home, the family’s disintegration is underway. Hans’ ambitious daughter Monika falls in with Che Guevara’s Marxist guerrillas, quickly rising up the ranks. Lovestruck Heidi just wants to marry and return to Munich. Trixi, the youngest, appears to be following in the fateful steps of their sickly mother, a heavy smoker who dies early. The story unfolds through the perspectives of Hans’ daughters and other narrators, spanning more than a decade at a quick pace which belies the fact that Hasbún writes with patience and precision, revealing the family’s most intimate thoughts and interactions: first smokes, blind love, and familial devotion. This is a novel to savor for its richness and grace and its historical and political scope. -- Fullmer, Jonathan (Reviewed 8/1/2017) (Booklist, vol 113, number 22, p34)
  • The Ertl family produced two infamous members whose lives are fictionalized in Hasbún’s moody and spare novel. Hans Ertl was a famous Nazi cinematographer exiled to Bolivia after World War II, where he became obsessed with finding the Lost City of Paititi. His eldest daughter, Monika, who accompanied him on an expedition to find the mythological land, married into a wealthy family before becoming radicalized, joining the Marxist revolutionary movement, and becoming a guerilla fighter. All of this is known as fact, but through his measured and oddly ethereal writing (reminiscent somewhat of Paulo Coelho), Hasbún creates a sort of double exposure of the Ertl family’s slow demise over the upheaval roiling through South America. The impact of Hans’s restlessness on his family—his three daughters and their mother—frames the narrative, which unfolds through multiple points of view. Somehow, it is Trixi, the sister who stayed behind with her mother while the rest of the family sought Paititi, whose staid narrative provides the most powerful moments: from her unhappy, cancerous mother deliberately introducing her to cigarettes at age 12, to the devastating paragraph in which Monika corrects Trixi’s naive belief that her older sister’s lover died accidentally: “They kicked his spine until it snapped.” This is an inventive, powerful novel. (Sept.) --Staff (Reviewed 07/24/2017) (Publishers Weekly, vol 264, issue 30, p)
  • One of Granta's 22 Best of Young Spanish-Language Novelists, Bolivian-born, Texas-based Hasbún makes his English-language DEBUT. In Part 1, set in the late 1950s, ex-Nazi filmmaker Hans Ertl moves with his family to Bolivia and embarks on an expedition to unearth a lost Incan city in the Amazon jungle. Accompanied by his two older daughters and two scientists, he finds some ruins but immolates their base camp. Part 2 jumps ahead to the decade of the Marxist guerrilla warfare ravaging the country. Hans's wife has died, and daughters Monika, Heidi, and Trixi have gone their separate ways. Most notably, the oldest, Monika joins the Marxist Resistance with disastrous results. This relatively brief novel is split among seven narrators (with the daughters' voices repeating), and the fast pacing and sparse narration mean a greater focus on events than on development of the characters. The ironic title reflects the lack of real affection among the characters, save perhaps for their quixotic causes. VERDICT Tracing the progress of two generations of a dysfunctional Bolivian family set during a violent historical period, this novel captures events in a country largely unfamiliar to most American readers. [See Prepub Alert, 3/13/17.]—Lawrence Olszewski, North Central State Coll., Mansfield, OH --Lawrence Olszewski (Reviewed 09/01/2017) (Library Journal, vol 142, issue 14, p106)
  • /* Starred Review */ A German family heads to Bolivia after World War II, sparking decades of internal strife amid political revolution.Hasbún's brisk, sensitive U.S. debut is a fictionalized story of the Ertl clan, which emigrated to escape the ruins and political embarrassments of Nazism. (Patriarch Hans worked as an assistant to propagandist Leni Riefenstahl.) But Hans' dream of exploring a new land absent politics slowly erodes. Central to that shift is his daughter Monika, who, after a failed marriage, joins Che Guevara's revolutionaries; "she felt that she had at last found her place in the world." Her decision, and the violence that follows it, creates a blast radius around the rest of the family, especially her sisters, Trixi and Heidi. But though Hasbún's narrative is rooted in politics, its key strengths are his remarkable command of time and characterization. The novel is short but gallops across a half-century's worth of transformations in Bolivia, and sections narrated by individual characters are marked by a surprising depth of emotional detail given the story's brevity. Reinhard, the brother of Monika's husband, can't reconcile "the intriguing Monika from the early days with the impossible Monika later on." Heidi describes the disoriented family as like "soldiers searching for a war, or interplanetary beings," while Trixi laments the "doses of horror" that Monika's radicalization created; Monika herself hardens over time, becoming someone with "no emotion, no memory." More detail about each of these characters would be welcome; the book feels at times like an epic historical saga that's been cut down to size by an especially aggressive editor. But in stripping down the story to its barest essence, Hasbún has intensified the effects of each individual scene; the volumes' worth of drama contained in the family's life emerge by suggestion and implication. A one-sitting tale of fragmented relationships with a broad scope, delivered with grace and power.(Kirkus Reviews, August 1, 2017)
Assigning source
  • Provided by publisher
  • Provided by publisher
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10581784
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorDate
1981-
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Hasbún, Rodrigo
Dewey number
863/.7
Index
no index present
Literary form
novels
http://library.link/vocab/relatedWorkOrContributorDate
1986-
http://library.link/vocab/relatedWorkOrContributorName
Hughes, Sophie
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Ertl, Hans
  • Ertl, Hans
  • Germans
  • Families
  • FICTION / Literary
  • FICTION / Coming of Age
  • FICTION / Political
  • Families
  • Germans
  • Bolivia
  • Bolivia
Label
Affections, Rodrigo Hasbún ; translated by Sophie Hughes
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
1889021
Dimensions
22 cm
Edition
First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition.
Extent
132 pages
Isbn
9781501154799
Lccn
2017004896
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9781501154799
  • (OCoLC)962009674
Label
Affections, Rodrigo Hasbún ; translated by Sophie Hughes
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
1889021
Dimensions
22 cm
Edition
First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition.
Extent
132 pages
Isbn
9781501154799
Lccn
2017004896
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9781501154799
  • (OCoLC)962009674

Library Locations

    • Carver BranchBorrow it
      1161 Angelina St., Austin, TX, 78702, US
      30.2695584 -97.7240278
    • Central LibraryBorrow it
      710 W. Cesar Chavez St, Austin, TX, 78701, US
      30.2713021 -97.7460168
    • Terrazas BranchBorrow it
      1105 E. Cesar Chavez St., Austin, TX, 78702, US
      30.2599154 -97.7334621
    • University Hills BranchBorrow it
      4701 Loyola Ln., Austin, TX, 78723, US
      30.3093017 -97.6664785
    • Willie Mae Kirk BranchBorrow it
      3101 Oak Springs Dr., Austin, TX, 78723, US
      30.2729762 -97.699748
    • Windsor Park BranchBorrow it
      5833 Westminster Dr., Austin, TX, 78723, US
      30.3116523 -97.6902298
    • Yarborough BranchBorrow it
      2200 Hancock Dr., Austin, TX, 78756, US
      30.3234684 -97.74072129999999
Processing Feedback ...