JUAN CARLOS ONETTI – THE SHIPYARD (EL ASTILLERO)
Book Review from ViajeLiterario-AlohaCriticon
Finding among his influences the Bible, Céline, Proust, Dostoievski, Faulkner, Camus or Cervantes, Juan Carlos Onetti is one of the great groundbreakers in the Spanish narrative in general and in South America in particular. He escapes from the prevailing magic realism of the contemporary writers of the continent creating more universal stories exposed in a pessimistic and dark tone and surly, oppressive and anguish exuding sceneries.
In The Shipyard (El Astillero) (1961), placed in Santa María, his particular Yoknapatawpha (Faulkner is one of his master influences ), we can see his usual faded sceneries used as a psychological symbol and the presence of isolated characters, a worn antihero starring in a text existentially focused, dealing with individual alienation and uncommunicativeness in the corrupted modern society.
Onetti’s style is dense and his capacity to create ambiences, with a great inventive in the imagery, introduces the reader in an intense way, in a depressing story in which nothing but the consecution of that great, sad, hopeless, surly atmosphere occurs.