The Annotated Savage Detectives

From an interview with Natasha Wimmer:

Something peculiar about Bolaño is that he wanted to write what he called the “Total Novel.” By this he meant that he wanted all of his novels to be interconnected. So you’ll see some of the same characters pop up from novel to novel in different forms, but then you’ll also see those characters appear in his life. I’ve always thought that a fun thing to do would be to produce an annotated edition of The Savage Detectives. For example: there’s a group of young poets in The Savage Detectives called the visceral realists, but in real life Bolaño started a group called the Infrarealists in Mexico City. Some of the ex-Infrarealists have a website about their time in Mexico City with Bolaño. On it they posted bitter remarks about how Bolaño had sold out, how he should have stayed a poet, and how they were the true characters in the novel.


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Bolano’s old friends sound like a tiresome bunch.

I think this is a great idea. Sounds like its nowhere close to happening, and likely won’t happen, but I wish this was done with more books in translation. It would add great context and make the translation “richer” if that makes sense.

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