Vendor- Parini, Jay
Borges and Me: An Encounter
In this evocative work of what the author in his afterword calls “a kindof novelistic memoir,” Jay Parini takes us back fifty years, when he fled the United States for Scotland—in flight from the Vietnam War and desperately in search of his adult life. There, through unlikely circumstances, he meets the famed Argentinian author Jorge Luis Borges.
Borges—visiting his translator in Scotland—is in his seventies, blind and frail. When Borges hears that Parini owns a 1957 Morris Minor, he declares a long-held wish to visit the Highlands, where he hopes to meet a man in Inverness who is interested in Anglo-Saxon riddles. As they travel, stopping at various sites of historical interest, the charmingly garrulous Borges takes Parini on a grand tour of Western literature and ideas, while promising to teach him about love and poetry. As Borges’s idiosyncratic world of labyrinths, mirrors, and doubles shimmers into being, their escapades take a surreal turn.
Borges and Me is a classic road novel, based on true events. It’s also a magical mystery tour of an era, like our own, in which uncertainties abound, and when—as ever—it’s the young and the old who hear voices and dream dreams.
Paperback, Nov 23rd 2021