6 Sessions via Zoom Wednesdays, 7:00 pm EST - 8:30 pm EST March 3 to June 9, 2021
The ‘With Book’ option includes a copy of The Savage Detectives at a 15% discount.
3/3, 3/24, 4/14, 5/5/, 5/26, 6/9
A soaring tale of literary adventure, Roberto Bolaño’s The Savage Detectives is packed with pimps, poets, detectives and dealers. It takes a huge cast of characters, some real, some fictional, to relate the exploits of Arturo Belano and Ulises Lima, two shaggy-haired troubadours in search of a writer in the Sonora desert who might just be the mother of all literature. Their antic quest is at turns darkly funny and tragic, as the pair and their coterie of artists and slackers do their best to survive the glories and misadventures of the 20th century.
A novel that Roberto Bolaño described as a love letter to his own generation, The Savage Detectives is a sweeping tableau of art, sex and politics, a kooky road trip that takes the reader from the deserts of Mexico to Europe, South America, the Middle East, Africa and beyond. This is the much-loved novel that cemented the Chilean author’s reputation as one of Latin America’s most ambitious and admired novelists when it was first published in to great acclaim in 1998.
No previous knowledge of Latin American literature is assumed, and there will be no required reading apart from the novel itself. In meetings we will discuss the themes of the book along with Bolaño’s signature prose style, and the novel’s sprawling structure. The Center for Fiction takes no responsibility for participants who quit their jobs to go and write poems in the desert.
We will read and discuss the novel over the course of six meetings:
- Session I: Part 1: Mexicans Lost in Mexico (pp 3-141)
- Session II: Part 2: The Savage Detectives – Chapters 1-7 (pp 142 – 249)
- Session III: Part 2: The Savage Detectives – Chapters 8-14 (pp 250 – 361)
- Session IV: Part 2: The Savage Detectives – Chapters 15-20 (pp 362 – 475)
- Session V: Part 2: The Savage Detectives – Chapters 21-26 (pp 476 – 588)
- Session VI: Part 3: The Deserts of Sonora (pp 589 – 648)
Samuel Rutter is a writer and translator from Melbourne, Australia with an extensive research background in contemporary literature from Latin America. He has translated novels, stories, screenplays and comics from French, Spanish and Catalan, and was awarded a PEN Translates Prize in 2016. His work has appeared in Harper’s, the White Review, Gulf Coast, and T magazine.
About this series
Whether you’re looking to catch up on great novels or you’re interested in exploring a new writer or literary period, our reading groups offer high-level literary discussion led by experts in the field.
Plotting the Perfect Crime (Story) with Jonathan Santlofer (Sold Out)$150
Wednesday - Friday 2:00 pm EST - 4:00 pm EST January 27 to January 29, 2021
Inside Criminal Minds: Crafting Psychological Suspense with Alison Gaylin$150
Friday - Sunday 2:00 pm EST - 4:00 pm EST January 29 to January 31, 2021
Writing Sex in Fiction with Regina M. Porter$395
Once a week Wednesdays, 6:00 pm EST - 8:00 pm EST February 3 to March 10, 2021
Building Page-Turning Thrill Rides for Readers with Duane Swierczynski$150
Thursday - Saturday 3:00 pm EST - 5:00 pm EST February 4 to February 6, 2021
From Family Lore to Narrative Fiction with Maisy Card (Sold Out)$395
Once a week Tuesdays, 6:30 pm EST - 8:30 pm EST February 9 to March 16, 2021
Dialogue: Letting Your Characters Do More of the Work with De’Shawn Charles Winslow$495
Once a week Wednesdays, 6:30 pm EST - 8:30 pm EST February 10 to March 31, 2021
Users and Suckers and Steady Bad Luckers: Writing Complex Characters with William Boyle (Sold Out)$150
Friday - Sunday 2:00 pm EST - 4:00 pm EST February 12 to February 14, 2021
Members Only: The LiterariansFree
Wednesday, 12:30 pm EST - 2:00 pm EST February 17, 2021
How to Write Character-Driven Plot with Lauren Wilkinson (Sold Out)$150
Once a week Thursdays, 6:00 pm EST - 8:00 pm EST February 18 to March 4, 2021
New Ways to Jumpstart Stalled Stories with Sahar Mustafah$150
Saturday & Sunday 2:00 pm EST - 4:15 pm EST February 20 to February 21, 2021
What’s Italian? A Journey through 20th Century Italy with Antonio Romani
6 Sessions via Zoom Tuesdays, 6:00 pm EST - 7:30 pm EST February 23 to May 4, 2021
Reading the Other Americas with Kaiama L. Glover
4 Sessions via Zoom Wednesdays, 7:00 pm EST - 8:30 pm EST February 24 to May 26, 2021
The Art of Fiction Writing with Diane Zinna$495
Once a week Saturdays, 10:00 am EST - 12:00 pm EST February 27 to April 17, 2021
Criminal Justice in Fiction with Jennifer Baker
5 Sessions via Zoom Sundays, 1:00 pm EST - 2:30 pm EST February 28 to June 27, 2021
Elena Ferrante: The Early Works with Rebecca Falkoff
4 Sessions via Zoom Mondays, 7:00 pm EST - 8:30 pm EST March 1 to May 24, 2021