Tracing his personal history through the 1950s, Marquez applies the same skill and lyricism he demonstrates in his fiction to the genre of autobiography. The first in a series of three volumes chronicling his remarkable career, Living to Tell the Tale is a fluid, fascinating account of the Nobel Laureate's upbringing in Colombia and his development as a writer. Unconfined by the bounds of a strict chronology, Marquez offers a meandering account of his childhood and adolescence in a vivid narrative that's filled with anecdotes about his unconventional family, as well as insights into his personal relationships, his work as a journalist and novelist, and the love he feels for his homeland. The book is also a record of a country in a constant state of upheaval, as Marquez provides a survey of contemporary Colombian politics. A reading group guide is available in print and online at www.readinggroupcenter.com.