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Writers remember Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Many took to the Internet Thursday and Friday to post tributes Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the Colombian novelist and Nobel laureate, who died Thursday at the age of 87.

Among those remembering him were Haitian-American author Edwidge Danticat and Chilean writer Isabel Allende.

Danticat, writing for the New Yorker, remembered the author’s “famously unbridled imagination” that he used to portray “somewhat common yet unbearable realities”:

I am often surprised when people talk about the total implausibility of the events in García Márquez’s fiction. Having been born and lived in a deeply spiritual and extraordinarily resourceful part of the Caribbean, a lot of what might seem magical to others often seems quite plausible to me.

Of course a woman can live inside her cat, as the character Eva does, in García Márquez’s 1948 short story “Eva Is Inside Her Cat.” Doesn’t everyone have an aunt who’s done that? And remember that neighbor who died but kept growing in his coffin, as in the 1947 story “The Third Resignation”? What seems implausible to me is a lifetime of absolute normalcy, a world in which there are no invasions, occupations, or wars, no poverty or dictators, no earthquakes or cholera.

In a statement released Friday, Allende remembered her “maestro,” stating that his work is “immortal”:

I just learned with great grief that Gabriel Garcia Marquez has died. The only consolation is that his work is immortal. Very few books can withstand the implacable test of time, very few authors are remembered, but Garcia Marquez belongs among the classics of universal literature. He is the most important of all Latin American writers of all times, the voice of magic realism, and the pillar of the Latin American Boom of Literature. He narrated Latin America to the world and he showed us, Latin Americans, our own image in the mirror of his pages. We are all from Macondo. All Spanish-speaking writers that came before and have come after him are measured against his immense talent. His undeniable influence is like the tide; it comes and goes in waves. I owe him the impulse and the freedom to plunge into literature. In his books I found my own family, my country, the people I have known all my life, the color, the rhythm, and the abundance of my continent. My maestro has died. I will not mourn him because I have not lost him: I will continue to read his words over and over.

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