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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Review: Waiting For Robert Capa by Susana Fortes

Publisher: Harper Perennial  
ISBN: 0062000381
Pages:208 pages
Genre: Historical Fiction  
Challenges-100+ Reading Challenge, Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge
Buy this Book: Amazonclip_image001_thumb_thumb, Powell's, Indiebound clip_image0013_thumb_thumbclip_image0014_thumb_thumb

Summary from publisher:

Artists, Jews, nonconformists, exiles. Gerta Pohorylle meets AndrÉ Friedmann in Paris in 1935 and is drawn to his fierce dedication to justice, journalism, and the art of photography. Assuming new names, Gerda Taro and Robert Capa travel together to Spain, Europe’s most harrowing war zone, to document the rapidly intensifying turmoil of the Spanish Civil War. In the midst of the peril and chaos of brutal conflict, a romance for the ages is born, marked by passion and recklessness . . . until tragedy intervenes.

Already published to international acclaim, Waiting for Robert Capa is an exhilarating tale of art and love—and a moving tribute to all those who risk their lives to document the world’s violent transformations.

My Review:  

I walked into this book expecting to love it. Actually hoping to love it. I very rarely do that for fear of being disappointed. I’m sad to say that I was disappointed with this one.

I am always interested in novels that are based on real events and real people. When they are done well, it can be amazing. This one focuses on the romance between Robert Capa and Gerda Taro. I knew nothing about either of these photojournalists before I began reading. But I quickly became engrossed in their story. Their love story was turbulent and it was interesting. It was my favorite part of the book. But the part that I thought I would love fell short. I liked the rich historical detail. The writing style worked well here. It was short and full of sentence fragments and half-formed thoughts. It almost felt like camera flashes. But I really had trouble with all of the time jumping. I kept getting taken out of the story because I couldn’t figure out where I was.

This book confused me plain and simple. Maybe it’s because I’ve been reading so much this month and I have reader’s fatigue but no matter how hard I tried I just couldn’t get into this book. The historical detail was choppy at best. I can deal with time period jumping but when it’s excessive, it tends to be overbearing. I also thought the language was a bit stilted. Sometimes it was lovely but at other times it felt a bit choppy. I’m not sure if it was because this was a translation but the writing style just didn’t work for me. I did like that I got a real sense of what it was like to be a photojournalist in the 1930s but I just couldn’t get into the story or the writing style.

Overall, this one was a bit of a disappointment for me. Readers interested in the history of photography, journalism or Robert Capa and Gerda Taro, would love this book but it just wasn’t for me.


*A copy of this book was provided to me by the publisher for review.   My opinion is my own and has not been influenced in any way and any monies   made from associate or affiliate accounts are recycled back into the  blog.

1 comment:

  1. I'm sorry you didn't end up loving this one as you'd hoped to, but thanks for being on the tour.



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