Alfonso – Review I SKLAVOS

April 11, 2014

 “I passed the wine bottle, and Raul said he was looking forward to the skinning and butchering of our bounty. In all the excitement, we didn't notice that the sky had gone dark until the wind and rain suddenly started hammering the car. Before long, we were merely crawling along, very much like we are now. The car started shuddering, and Salvador said the engine was no good in the wet. A while later, we noticed that people were staring at us, some even blowing their horns. Raul told Salvador not to take any notice of the people, just drive. It was only when the tape finished playing and the rain eased that we heard the sheep bleating in the boot.” (Alfonso, pp.58 -59).

Félix Calvino takes the everyday and blends it with humour, nostalgia and meaning. The protagonist Alfonso is a strong, engaging character who will stay with you long after you finish this fluid novella. By following his journey from Spain to Australia, and subsequent life there, you will catch glimpses of the two countries and the interesting space that Alfonso occupies. By the time he holds his house-warming party, you will ache to be amongst the aromas and laughter emanating from the place. But despite the distraction, Alfonso’s loneliness will seep into your pores and make you wonder what it means to be at home and to have a home.

Jacqueline SKLAVOS