If you have not yet read Jorge Luis Borges, you can find an absolute feast of his writings in the long-awaited Collected Fictions. Even if he is one of your favorite writers, this new book is cause for celebration. It's the first collection of all of the Argentine master's tales, and the first to be translated by the same person, Andrew Hurley. To have them all together and in a consistent voice is a delight. What are we to make of him? John Updike once asked of Borges. His stories are half fable and half essay, rich with gorgeous imagery and erudite (and sometimes fictional) allusion. Characteristic of Borges's narrative maneuvering is the single-page tale in which Borges explains that it is Borges, the other one, that things happen to, and that the other Borges is turning all of the narrator's life into literature. This sly meditation on the act of creativity ends with a confession: I am not sure which of us it is that's writing this page.

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