Suzanne Jill Levine
A traffic jam outside Paris lasts for weeks. Che Guevara and Fidel Castro meet on a mountaintop during the Cuban Revolution. A flight attendant becomes obsessed with a small Greek island, resulting in a surreal encounter with death. In All Fires the Fire, Julio Cortázar (author of Hopscotch and the short story “Blow-Up”) creates his own mindscapes beyond space and time, where lives intersect for brief moments and situations break and refract. All Fires the Fire contains some of Julio Cortázar’s most beloved stories. It is a classic collection by “one of the world’s great writers” (Washington Post).
The stories, chosen from various collections published from the mid-’50s to the late ’80s, is aptly divided into two parts, “The Labyrinth of Love” and “Adverse Miracles,” ample frames for the author’s amatory tales and wry magical realism. It is a fine introduction to one of Latin America’s leading modern writers - and a choice retrospective of the master storyteller who won the 1990 Cervantes Prize, Spain’s most prestigious literary award, for his lifetime work.