Read What We Become: A Novel by Arturo Pérez-Reverte Online

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#1 bestselling author and Dagger Award winner Arturo Pérez-Reverte delivers an epic historical tale following the dangerous and passionate love affair between a beautiful high society woman and an elegant thief. A story of romance, adventure, and espionage, this novel solidifies Pérez-Reverte as an international literary giant.En route from Lisbon to Buenos Aires in 1928,#1 bestselling author and Dagger Award winner Arturo Pérez-Reverte delivers an epic historical tale following the dangerous and passionate love affair between a beautiful high society woman and an elegant thief. A story of romance, adventure, and espionage, this novel solidifies Pérez-Reverte as an international literary giant.En route from Lisbon to Buenos Aires in 1928, Max and Mecha meet aboard a luxurious transatlantic cruise ship. There Max teaches the stunning stranger and her erudite husband to dance the tango. A steamy affair ignites at sea and continues as the seedy decadence of Buenos Aires envelops the secret lovers.Nice, 1937. Still drawn to one another a decade later, Max and Mecha rekindle their dalliance. In the wake of a perilous mission gone awry, Mecha looks after her charming paramour until a deadly encounter with a Spanish spy forces him to flee.Sorrento, 1966. Max once again runs into trouble—and Mecha. She offers him temporary shelter from the KGB agents on his trail, but their undeniable attraction offers only a small glimmer of hope that their paths will ever cross again.Arturo Pérez-Reverte is at his finest here, offering readers a bittersweet, richly rendered portrait of a powerful, forbidden love story that burns brightly over forty years, from the fervor of youth to the dawn of old age....

Title : What We Become: A Novel
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781476752006
Format Type : ebook
Number of Pages : 464 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

What We Become: A Novel Reviews

  • Rodrigo
    2019-01-04 14:13

    I am definitely getting old for this kind of book. Glamour scenarios, like luxury boats traveling from Europe to South America, amazing hotels and cocktails, a touch of exotic old guard tango in Buenos Aires during the 20s, Italian spies, and high rolling casinos (Monte Carlo, of course). Put all that against a historically interesting context: civil war in Spain, preparations for the Second World War, the Cold War and chess championships in the 60s 70s. Add a little sex. Not to much, after all we want fine ladies to consume this product. As characters you choose a millionaire, jet set Chilean-Spanish woman, sexually liberated by a perverted husband (that luckily dies soon) and an argentinean burglar, specialized in jewelry and squeezing money from old American millionaire women in exchange from sexual favors. Of course the guy is not bad and turns out to be a sensitive "Bon vivant" that tries to escape from the miseries of his childhood. And then we have true love, mysterious, deep, even if produced after a one week affair 20 years ago. And voila! You have a best seller. Come on, this is a bad Hollywood B movie, soap opera at its best. Give me a break. I am done with Reverte.

  • Lyubov
    2019-01-06 09:07

    Приключих „Тангото на старата гвардия” на Артуро Перес-Реверте. И мога само да въздъхна възхитено: „Ехаааа!” Искам да започна с уговорката, че това не е типичният Реверте, не очаквайте исторически детайли и подробности, военни действия и хусари на кон. За мен лично романът разкрива една изцяло нова страна на неговия талант. А именно – любовен и шпионски роман, в който се кръстосват най-доброто от традициите на Джеймс Бонд, подплатени с великолепния стил на писане на автора и перфектните (за мен разбира се) секс сцени. Да, правилно прочетохте – в „Тангото на старата гвардия” дон Перес-Рерверте сваля белите ръкавици на жив испански класик и мощно влиза в сферата на плътското. Обаче без опошляване, без излишна захаросаност, без недомлъвки. Хваща те за косата и те отнася директно в света на фетишите, докато наблюдава в огледалото. В контражур.Признавам си, останах изумена, но безкрайно доволна. Разбира се романът не е само секс, основата му е безкрайно динамичния и интересен живот по ръба на бръснача на чаровния мошеник и неповторим танцьор на танго Макс Коста. Има кражби, виртуозно разбиване на сейфове, дузини приеми във висшето общество, както и запознанство с корените на истинското, безсрамно танго на момчетата от едно време, наречено Тангото на старата гвардия. Има го и шахът разбира се (за къде сме без шах в роман на Реверте), но без излишни подробности. Само най-необходимото за хода на действието. И разбира се има я фаталната любов с фаталната жена, подправена с щипка политика (но съвсем мъничка, колкото да придаде допълнителна дълбочина) и шпионски игри. Какво повече би могъл да иска човек?

  • Metodi Markov
    2018-12-23 09:07

    За мен, две от най-фаталните и привлекателни жени в литературата са излезли под перото на Перес-Реверте - Танхер Сото и Меча Инсунса. И цяло щастие бе да ги открия и да им се насладя. Всичко друго бледнее пред начина, по който им е вдъхнат живот - пълнокръвни, истински, опасни, красиви, екзотични и все пак, просто жени. Препоръчвам Тангото на старата гвардия, както и Морската карта.

  • RalitsaKoleva
    2019-01-05 10:50

    От доста време исках да опитам нещо на Реверте, а какво по-добро от книга носеща името на танц. Танците винаги са ми били слабост за това и посегнах към книгата с големи очаквания и една скрита доза любов (само заради корицата признавам си). Освен всичко останало, колкото и привлекателен да е света на YA литературата, той не е единствен. Има една красота и размах в по-дебелите и сложни книги и за това обичам да се потапям и в тях.https://bloodyrosered.wordpress.com/2...

  • Sonia
    2019-01-16 11:52

    Lo mejor de El tango de la guardia vieja es que se trata de un libro de Arturo Pérez Reverte. Es esa una garantía primero de una escritura impecable, bien estructurada, rica en vocabulario, sin florituras excesivas, evocadora y bien templada, un punto de disfrute en sí mismo. En segundo lugar, el tipo de protagonista es un clásico del autor que bien podría haber sido Alatriste o algún militar de los que decidieron, pese a las órdenes en contra, salir a defender a los ciudadanos de Madrid el 2 de mayo sabiendo de antemano que ese sería su final.Max Costa, el personaje principal, es un hombre de vuelta de la vida, desencantado pero que conserva su sentido personal de lo que es el honor y para quién está reservado. Un eterno luchador y sin embargo un eterno perdedor que no parece encajar en los tiempos en los que ahora le toca vivir. Un hombre enlazado a un amor imposible, a una mujer imposible y que sin embargo podría haber vivido con ella, en otro mundo, en otro momento, una bella historia de amor. Este hombre, el recorrido por algunos capítulos de su vida, la última aventura que va a vivir y que Pérez-Reverte nos relata en su libro, es lo que hace la novela un clásico del autor y lo que le da la riqueza, el toque único y especial que amamos quienes somos fieles seguidores de este escritor.Sin embargo, algo cojea en la trama. El desarrollo es lento, hasta bien avanzada la lectura, más allá de la mitad del libro, no sabes muy bien qué es lo que el autor te quiere contar, a dónde te quiere llevar. Falta acción cuando la narración apunta que debería haberla y esta sólo se precipita en el último 10% del libro. Aunque nunca llega a aburrir, falta movimiento, intriga, enganche...Lo dejo con una puntuación de tres estrellas cuando otros con la mitad de clase en la escritura habrían recibido más pero a un gran autor como Arturo Pérez-Reverte no se le puede pedir menos que la excelencia a la que nos tiene acostumbrados y a la que no llega este Tango de la guardia vieja.

  • Great Pretender(Daria)
    2018-12-29 13:10

    There is a theory that counterclockwise motion in tango symbolizes an attempt to turn back time and relive one`s past and memories. And that`s the theme of the book. That`s why it consists of two layers – the past and the present, wrapped around two people, man and woman, so different and at the same time drawn to each other. The book contains their memories of younger versions of themselves, that exists no more. How can a person live, when the world has changed and he has not?There`s Max, elegant trickster and brilliant dancer. He drifts through life and doesn`t have anything permanent. And there`s Mecha, beautiful and rich woman with the strong feeling that the world is hers. Well, the question is: is it enough to love somebody to be with him despite all differences? There`s a perfect place for equality – dance floor, where it doesn`t matter who you are. But life is not a tango. And sometimes love is hardly enough for a man to completely chance his lifestyle and score out his past, even for a woman he loves. Can he pretend to be someone he`s not or claim it from another person?It`s hard to read this book fast. Reading it was like dancing tango, pushing off the text, feeling its tension and slowly drifting form one page to another. As in tango, sometimes reader has to stop to find out where he is - in the lovers` past or their present. Pérez-reverte truly reflects the feeling of sadness and sorrow traditional for this dance and its philosophy. Not loss, not despair or depression, but sorrow. The kind of sorrow after which you stand up, raise your head and go on. Can we live otherwise?

  • Carla Soares
    2018-12-25 14:57

    Neste Tango, o autor alterna o presente das peersonagens com épocas do seu passado para contar uma história de amor. Não é uma história de amor bonita, porque as personagens também não o são... isto é, são-no por fora, e muito, para além de refinadas e inteligentes, mas aquilo de que se ocupam e os jogos que fazem desfeiam-nos interiormente. Max, o protagonista, é um belo dançarino mundano, gigolo e ladrão, que se recriou a partir de uma certa elegância natural e "apagou" um passado miserável. Do passado de Mecha Inzuza nada se sabe, nem importa porque não se pressente nele nenhuma dificuldade particular, é uma mulher lindíssima da alta sociedade espanhola, no início da narrativa casada com um famoso compositor, Armand de Troyes. Os ambientes são luxuosos, mas deixam pressentir a cruza e fisicalidade, e uma certa dualidade nas interações e nas personagens, como se se escondesse sob o luxo um modo quase obsceno de existir, em que tudo é permitido e quase tudo aceite, desde que não exibido. É assim na sexualidade e é assim nos relacionamento sociais.Foi muito interessante a colocação temporal dos dois momentos do passado nos anos que antecederam as duas guerras, quando habitualmente se procura o impacto da guerra em si para fazer florescer a acção. Neste caso, sente-se o fervilhar de acontecimentos que as antecipam - sobretudo a segunda - com os movimentos de espiões e outras figuras. Há referências ao franquismo, ao fascismo de Mussolini. com a sua associação a Hitler, mais tarde ao comunismo da guerra fria... que seriam confusas, sem o conhecimento prévio das posições de cada país na guerra e depois dela. Não é um livro doce nem limpo, nem o fim é uma porta fechada, mas está muito bem escrito e é realmente interessante. completa em: http://monsterblues-cms.blogspot.pt/2...

  • Francisco
    2019-01-14 11:06

    Sin duda alguna, el mejor libro que he leído en el año. La vida de Max Costa, o al menos parte de ella, siendo un buscavidas, embaucador y caballero, dotado de la sonrisa y el ademán perfecto, de la frase ajena más oportuna para sus propias causas. Una novela de como pasa la vida, llevándose las galanterías, las florituras y dejando la esencia, el pozo dónde se alojan las verdaderas virtudes y los más oscuros pecados. La comparación con un tango, de un baile elegante y perfecto de salón cuyo origen es en realidad de bajo fondo y contenido carnal, así la vida de Max, excepto por una mujer. Tres encuentros breves definen la vida del hombre y muestran su verdadera naturaleza y vulnerabilidad, para al final retratar la decadencia, la vejez, desnudar como el paso del tiempo vuelven obsoletos hasta a los canallas y sólo queda la indiferencia, que en el caso de Max, es su dignidad y esencia. Tantas frases que me impactaron y que espero definan algún día como pase el tiempo por mi propia historia. Es un libro para leer despacio, saborearlo. Junto a "El Pintor de Batallas" se vuelven los libros por los que Pérez-Reverte es mi escritor favorito.

  • Pablo
    2019-01-14 08:59

    "—Una mujer nunca es sólo una mujer, querido Max. Es también, y sobre todo, los hombres que tuvo, que tiene y que podría tener. Ninguna se explica sin ellos... Y quien accede a ese registro posee la clave de la caja fuerte. El resorte de sus secretos.""El gesto con el que acompaña la respuesta es otro selecto comodín de su repertorio: una inclinación de cabeza, llena de modestia, acompañada por un ademán negligente de la mano izquierda que pretende apartar lo superfluo. Que es todo cuanto lo rodea, excepto la mujer que tiene delante.""En realidad yo sufría muy poco, pero eso tampoco tenía él por qué saberlo. En varias ocasiones intentó escapar de lo que llamaba la mediocridad y el fracaso de nuestra relación; y como la mayor parte de los hombres, lo más lejos que logró llegar fue a la vagina de otras mujeres.""También ésta es la historia de mi vida, pensó, o parte de ella: buscar un taxi de madrugada oliendo a mujer o a noche perdida, sin que una cosa contradiga la otra.""Es agradable ser feliz, pensó. Y saberlo mientras lo eres."

  • eyes.2c
    2018-12-26 14:02

    Gripping! Complex!In the first three pages or so I was a tad confused. I felt detached, disoriented even. As I should! I was crossing the Atlantic bound from Lisbon to Buenos Aires--ar least the characters I was about to become totally engaged with were. As I read on I became absolutely fascinated with them all. Max, I envisage as an aging Pierce Brosnan type, suave and sophisticated harbouring the faint memory of a rougher beginning. As we go between Max's past and present, between his coming to know Mecha onboard the luxury liner where he works as a dancer, and their last meeting, the threads are electrifyingly taut. The tango discussions between Mecha's husband, Armando de Troeye (a famous composer), Mecha, and Max are robust and heady laced as they are with the undercurrent of explicit yet restrained sexuality. De Troyeye is seeking to compose a new piece, a tango, as part of a bet with another composer. This is the connection between the three that becomes a catalyst for all that follows. The interplay between Mecha and Max over the years is puzzling, yet riveting. I found it hard to put 'What We Become' down. The language is vivid. One is there in Buenos Aires, in the old tango places, reeking with an edge of danger, smoke and complex sexuality. You feel the tensions in Nice, as Italy is becoming a fascist state, and then later in Sorento where things come full circle, Max and Mecha meeting once more. The story in told in those three places across three times, constantly changing between them.1928 onboard a cruise ship bound for Buenos Aires where Max and Mecha first meet.1937 in Nice where Max is dragged into a fascist connection.1996 in Sorento. The Cold War is still a memory and the Russian chess champion, complete with KGB entourage, is playing an important match here. Mecha's son is involved. Once again intrigue and danger come into play, a signature of Mecha and Max's passionate relationship.The complexity that is Mecha is slowly revealed, although the layers of who she really is never fully unveiled. As this happens we get a better glimpse of de Troyeye, and of the dark areas of Mecha's relationship with him.Substantive and intriguing, highly personal, with some wonderful twists and subtleties. a treat!A NetGalley ARC

  • Христо Блажев
    2019-01-06 11:48

    Едно танго, което не свършва…: http://knigolandia.info/book-review/t...Танго, политика, шах. И любов, разточително количество объркваща любов, минаваща през драматични пикове и спадове, гарнирана с толкова много еротика, витаеща далеч преди първата целувка, преди първото интимно докосване, преди първия акт на взаимна наслада. В “Тангото на Старата гвардия” Артуро Перес-Реверте прави майсторско показно как се създава чувствена интрига за едва няколко десетки страници – на пътуващ през океана параход, където красива богаташка попада в ръцете на виртуозния танцьор Макс (не, не си представяйте Патрик Суейзи, моля ви). Красив, изискан, несравнимо обаятелен, той крие зад съвършените си маниери мизерно минало и амбиции за по-добро бъдеще, което включва елегантно преразпределяне на материалните блага от богатите към бедните, по възможност без да бъде хванат. И макар в Меча да го привлича скъпата ѝ огърлица, то в крайна сметка откраднат ще бъде целият му живот.Издателство "Еднорог"​http://knigolandia.info/book-review/t...

  • Alessia Scurati
    2018-12-24 09:01

    Leggo Pérez Reverte senza traduzione per implementare il mio vocabolario. Lo consiglio, anzi, se siete finiti in qualche noioso “corso di spagnolo”. Per imparare nuove parole è l’ideale precisissimo nelle descrizioni, attento nelle varianti di argot (qui con qualche termine di lunfardo legato al tango, altrove con il lessico navale). Sfiora quasi la pedanteria quando inizia a descrivere abbigliamento e accessori con marca, materiali e costo manco stessimo leggendo Vogue. Anche meno.A Pérez Reverte piacciono un sacco Napoli, Sorrento, la Costiera, la Campania e io proprio non posso dargli torto. Gli fa schifo Milano e questo me lo potrebbe rendere antipatico. Se non fosse che essendo un noto misogino con posizioni politiche a volte discutibili, mi sta antipatico a prescindere.Detto questo: i suoi libri, per me, sono esattamente quello che voglio leggere quando sono in vacanza. Intrighi, suspence, vicende del passato con una forte base di avvenimenti storici e culturali. Ah, c’è anche l’amore. Che finisce male (spoiler - ok, ve lo dovevo dire prima). Un argentino che per vivere si arrangia come ballerino di tango nonché tot boy di ricche signori, conosce una coppia su un transatlantico e si innamora perdutamente della moglie di un noto compositore spagnolo. In mezzo c’è: Buenos Aires, le bettole de la Boca, un furto, Nizza, la Guerra Civile spagnola, spie di mezza Europa, La Seconda Guerra Mondiale, la senilità, Sorrento, un campionato di Scacchi, la Guerra Fredda, ecc. Non necessariamente in quest’ordine. Struttura solida, trama avvincente, storia ben costruita. Non è un capolavoro, ma si legge. Specie se anche voi state sotto all’ombrellone, o in poltrona, piazzati sotto all'aria condizionata. Estivo.

  • Alicia
    2018-12-29 13:59

    Resumen (he visto que los reseñadores comienzan explicando el argumento de las obras de las que hablan):Max Costa, bailarín a sueldo en un barco de lujo conoce a Mecha Inzunza y baila con ella. Los avatares del destino y una apuesta de su marido les llevan a la cama y a unos barrios malísimos de Buenos Aires. Años después vuelven a encontrarse cuando él ya no es bailarín, sino arribista profesional. Más años después, él es chófer y ella la madre de un famoso ajedrecista que resulta ser hijo de ambos; hecho en virtud del cual Mecha pide a Max que cometa un robo. Él acepta para recuperar el aprecio por sí mismo.Punto.No es que yo sea muy simple, es que lo que pasa es eso. Parafraseando al señor de las críticas de cine, diré que los dos protagonistas son muy elegantes, muy guapos y sólo visten tejidos nobles, que es lo que da calidad a la novela. Durante los cientos de páginas que Reverte emplea para contar esa historia, se supone que ahonda en la personalidad y las motivaciones de los personajes. De paso se describe el fin de una época dorada cuyo oropel consiste en que la diferencia de clases era más evidente que ahora, los de arriba sabían a dónde pertenecían, los de abajo lo sabían aún más, nadie decía tacos (esto al autor le habrá costado lo suyo llevarlo a la ficción, dado el estilo que acostumbra en sus artículos) y sale muchas veces la palabra hembra como sinónimo de mujer de verdad. Por otra parte, la caracterización del bailarín se completa con su oportuno paso por el ejército, donde terminan de forjarse su honor y su dignidad. Los traía de serie, pero la legión extranjera los acentúa. No quería cargar mucho las tintas, pero como soy española y por tanto tengo mucho orgullo pero más envidia y resentimiento, no puedo evitarlo. Esta caracterización de la idiosincrasia española está en el libro, conste. No la comparto, pero he decidido plegarme a ella; más que nada por dar gusto al autor.La novela tiene cosas buenas. Importantes, pero no suficientes. A saber, Reverte se lleva bien con las palabras. Todo lo que está escrito, desde la primera página a la última, está bien escrito. Impecable. Usa un lenguaje amplio, preciso, variado sin llegar a ser demasiado florido. Frases cortas y largas, un estilo cuidado que merece la pena analizar. Lo mejor de la obra es, sin duda, la estructura: Dividida en dos partes, el lector sabe siempre en qué momento del tiempo se encuentra. El pasado está narrado en pasado y el presente en presente. Además es un presente bien traído, no llama demasiado la atención y cumple la función de dejar claro dónde y cuándo suceden las cosas. La trama comienza en el pasado y llega hasta el presente. Reverte usa los fragmentos más largos para contar el primer encuentro de los amantes, el más alejado en el tiempo. Buena decisión puesto que es ahí donde se forjan los lazos entre ambos y el embrión de la relación que sostienen a través del tiempo y la distancia. Los fragmentos de presente intercalados con el pasado remoto son breves y sirven para situar la acción. La segunda parte de la historia, con frases más cortas y fragmentos también más cortos, narra el segundo encuentro de Mecha y Max. Aquí vemos un poco más de presente. En esta segunda parte Max ya es un hombre más hecho, se supone que tiene que caernos mejor porque le conocemos más profundamente. A él y a sus motivaciones. En la tercera parte, presente y pasado se desarrollan casi simultáneamente. Muy buena cosa: frases aún más cortas, menos explicaciones, menos descripciones, un par de revoluciones más en la acción y, ¡zas! el desenlace.Es un modo muy efectivo de ordenar los hechos, una manera muy inteligente de dosificar la información. Un poco como remontarse a la infancia para explicar los actos que uno lleva a cabo en la edad adulta. Inteligente y eficiente, sí. Sin duda lo mejor de la novela.Lo peor sin embargo es importante, grande, inevitable y le resta a una historia de amor y pérdida cualquier tipo de credibilidad: El autor está detrás de cada palabra. Se le ve al borde de cada frase. Para empezar, todos los personajes hablan igual (excepto uno, un señor argentino muy bajofondista), todos usan el mismo lenguaje impecable que el narrador, así que es imposible distinguir las líneas de diálogo. No te pierdes, ojo, están bien acotados; pero son conversaciones planas, sin vida. Los personajes son marionetas en manos del autor, carecen de vida, de independencia. Están ahí para que quede constancia de lo que el autor quería decir. Además todos parecen estar de acuerdo con el autor. comparten la misma idea de la elegancia, la arrogancia y lo que es como debe ser. Mientras leía, no podía quitarme de la cabeza la imagen de Reverte con sus gafas características, escribiendo de corrido, diciendo lo que le parecía sin pensar en lo que les parecería a Mecha o a Max.El final es además un poco absurdo, muy de Lucky Luke perdiéndose en el desierto a contraluz del sol poniente. Pero eso es lo de menos.

  • Zadaver
    2019-01-21 15:12

    Una historia de uno de esos Hombres que tanto le gustan a Perez-Reverte, que está de vuelta, rendido, que sabe lo que ha perdido y lo que va a perder y aun así continua porque es su obligación y ha dado su palabra. De esos perdedores que acaban mal y a los que aun así admiras. Cada vez que contemplo las andanzas de estos personajes me pregunto cuando del propio Arturo hay en ellos o cuanto del hombre que Arturo querría ser. La réplica a este Hombre se la da un pedazo de mujer de esas que también abundan en la obra de Perez-reverte. Peligrosa, misteriosa, deseable con una fuerza imparable que no se detendrá ante nada al defender a los suyos, en este caso menos traicionera de lo habitual, lo que es de agradecer, lo que el propio protagonista resume en una momento como "una hembra cuajada" ;-)Perez-reverte ha adquirido toda la maestría posible en el oficio de escritor. Sostiene las 3 historias (entrelazadas pero separadas en el tiempo) con elegancia sin que pierdas el interés en ninguna de ellas, maneja muy bien los tiempos haciéndolas subir y bajas casi al unísono. Ha enriquecido el contenido con mucha investigación y detalladas descripciones (aunque a la mayoría como a mi sospecho esto no nos aporte demasiado, son unas épocas que no viví y para las que carezco de referencias reales). Es de remarcar su cruzada por el castellano y como es tremendamente preciso en las descripciones, el léxico usando es casi siempre un lenguaje culto y ligeramente anticuado como corresponde (aunque probablemente algo impropio en algunos personajes de menor altura intelectual) dejando al final una sensación de obra reposada y muy revisada, de contar lo que quiere como quiere si dejarse llevar. Un libro recomendable y muy interesante pero al que quizás falta la chispa de otras obras del autor peor escritas pero con una historia más sorprendente.

  • Marta Querol
    2019-01-04 12:50

    De es este libro me ha gustado casi todo, la narrativa de Pérez Reverte que te envuelve en paisajes y ambientes lujosos y decadentes; los diálogos, cortos, rápidos, secos, como un tango; los personajes de Mecha y Max; las dos historias que corren en paralelo... Tal vez el final me ha dejado con ganas de algo más, de otra cosa, de un remate más potente y con todas las tramas abiertas, cerradas.Nos cuenta una historia de bajas pasiones, de amores no reconocidos, en dos tiempos, el pasado -como surgió-, y el presente -el poso que ha quedado y la visión que la madurez ha dejado en los protagonistas-, con dos historias de espionaje de fondo, una en torno a la guerra en el tiempo pasado, y otra relacionada con el mundo del ajedrez, en tiempo presente.Demuestra el autor como pueden tratarse temas escabrosos, como perversiones y filias no convencionales, con elegancia y buen gusto, aunque ahí creo que le ha faltado algo más de apasionamiento.La historia envuelve, seduce al lector, y lo lleva mansamente a través de sus páginas con una adicción serena pero definitiva. Me ha encantado y si no le pongo un 5 es porque tratándose de quien se trata, el final me habría gustado más redondo.

  • Kelsi H
    2019-01-11 08:09

    Please check out all of my reviews at http://ultraviolentlit.blogspot.ca!What We Become is the epic tale of the love affair between a wealthy, high society woman, Mecha, and a clever thief and con man, Max. In 1928, they meet on a cruise ship heading to Buenos Aires – Max is a charming employee of the cruise line, hired to dance with the single female passengers. Mecha is travelling with her husband, but he likes to watch while she dances the tango with Max. Mecha’s husband is a composer, and he is intrigued by Max’s descriptions of the old school tango, found in the slums of Buenos Aires – he arranged for the three of them to travel together, creating a bond of intimacy between all three.Almost a decade later, in 1937, Max and Mecha meet again on the French Riviera. Mecha’s husband has been killed, and she is living a high life with her wealthy, powerful friends. Max has been hired to steal secret documents from one of Mecha’s acquaintances, although even he does not understand the potential repercussions of his actions. The two meet again in the present, 1966. Mecha is the mother of a chess champion, who is competing in an important match against the current Russian champion. Max finds himself involved in confrontations with Russian gangsters and spies as he enters Mecha’s life for a third time. Even in old age, Max is cocky and confident, able to con his way through any circumstance. His world is cinematic like an old black and white movie, and he carouses through life as a vaudeville character. Max and Mecha’s relationship is romantic in a similarly old-fashioned film kind of way – they fall instantly in love, but there is no depth to their feelings. The novel bounces through time, jumping from one meeting to another. The disjointed temporality is unsettling, but it does show causation between each time period, and expose why things happened the way they did between Mecha and Max. Max compares his relationship with Mecha to an adjourned chess game, in which both players are constantly second-guessing their next move. Meanwhile, Max seems uncertain about whether he actually loves Mecha at all – he tells her, “I love you. I think. And yet love has nothing to do with all this.” (p. 429) This is the most romantic declaration in the book, so don’t expect more from withholding Max. The strength of What We Become is in its detailed descriptions of lush settings and rich, elegant parties. It is the glamorous luxury of old Hollywood combined with the excitement of exotic locales. Lifestyles of the rich and famous are contrasted with the slums of Buenos Aires and violent political situations in which Mecha’s husband is conveniently killed. The structure of the novel is elegant, but its actual story is superficial – Max and Mecha are pawns in Perez-Reverte’s chess game. They are two very flawed, troubled characters who spend their lives searching for love. While they make a connection immediately, they are unable to trust and therefore cannot make their relationship work over time. ---------I was asked by the publisher to compare What We Become with another forthcoming novel: Midge Raymond’s My Last Continent. Both involve intense love affairs that develop from sporadic meetings over the course of many years – Deb and Keller in My Last Continent, and Max and Mecha in What We Become. When they are reunited in the present, both couples are faced with a climactic event that shakes their relationship to its core. For Deb and Keller, it makes them stronger – their love is stripped to the basics and they learn what really matters in life. For Max and Mecha, current circumstances pull them apart, and they realize that their love may have been based on excitement and danger all along, with no real basis. And while both novels are large in scope, My Last Continent also delves into the minutiae of life, the details that make a real love story. In contrast, What We Become is epic in scale, but it doesn’t reach into the souls of its main characters in quite the same way. Both novels were strong, and I recommend both for summer reading, but for me, My Last Continent was a much more enjoyable read that I connected with on a deeper level.I received this novel from Atria/Simon & Schuster in exchange for an honest review.

  • Mex
    2019-01-16 08:59

    Some books, like this one, make people share big thoughts. Because special books like these never make of a review an easy thing. It was elementary for me to start with this short intro, because I feel this review must be as well given as this book was to me and made me feel. And I felt absorbed. So should this review, from the moment I thought of delivering it, rise to the height of this beautiful written work. We talk here El tango de la Guardia Vieja, by Arturo Perez-Reverte. El Tango de la Guardia Vieja is a book masterfully built in details. The reader is so skillfully introduced to the times and the places and characters of the story, that they themselves feel part of every scene thought-out as a descriptive masterpiece. It’s a book that one can read being absolutely detached of the characters and taken as it is, a plot of complexity, majestically rendered in words, or identifying oneself with the main male/female character, speculating traces of personality into their own. The insertions of action-taking place then and now, surprisingly interleaved to maintain the plot alive and revealing, capturing the parallel between the start and the sequels, make the storyline finer while placing connections between the key episodes. The beginning presents Max Costa, the young dandy and tango dancer on Cap Polonio, a transatlantic of the ‘20s on the move to Buenos Aires. Exquisite and splendid figure, Max dances to the tango tunes, elegantly inviting women to dance inside the fancy saloon of the luxury ship, where well-to-do high society would gather in the evenings. There he meets Mecha Inzunza de Troeye, a millionaire woman, wife of Armando de Troeye, famous composer at the time. She dances tango with Max on many occasions, and they complete each other brilliantly in a lacework of steps, very compatible together and responsive to each other in the ask-reply or serve-receive kind of tango teasing. The allure of the woman is splendidly described by Reverte through the eyes of Max, who observes physical details of her, details that bring him in a state of pure pleasure and delight. Details that outside feminine beauty, reveals also a dangerous attraction to her very expensive authentic pearl necklace she used to wear and match with her glamorous, usually backless outfits. Because yes, this is what Max was: a genial crook.The opening of the book shortly introduces the present, the old Max, now in the ‘60s, in Sorrento, Italy. He is now an employee of Swiss Dr. Hugentobler, chauffeur and a respectable man with a respectable occupation, away from the old habits. While in Sorrento in the car, Max Costa experiences strong heart emotions one day when before his eyes, a trio crosses the street. He notices in the gestures and smile of a now aged lady, similarities to a silhouette of a woman he might have known in the past. He is dazed and in an attempt to temper his state, he is mostly sure of one thing that scares him as scattered images appear to haunt his mind. The woman laughing colorfully with the couple crossing the street, is no other than her, Mecha Inzunza: older now, but with the same delicate gestures and slender figure as he remembered her. The tranquil times of the Sorrento period come after decades of incertitude and living at risk, yet paradoxically prudent. Max survives living in circumstances of no decent challenges, when persecusion in Europe in the interwar period was causing fear and migration here and there. Despite the dishonest nature of his fraudulent professional skills, he has fine manners and the fact of being handsome and fashionable and always finding the right words, saves him from many situations of doubt. He builts an identity for himself that readers will approve and digest. Toward the end of the book, the interesting part is when Max finds himself caught in a position he never anticipated coming.

  • Ritja
    2019-01-08 07:48

    Eine Frau, ein Mann, ein Tanz und drei Begegnungen.Meine ersten Gedanken zu diesem Buch waren: hoffentlich wird es nicht zu schnulzig und kitschig. Nein, das wird es nicht. Es sind noch immer ein Mann, eine Frau und ein Tanz, aber verpackt in eine interessante Geschichte rund um den Tango und Schach. Der Autor nimmt den Leser mit auf eine Schiffstour und lässt dort den Eintänzer Max die Hauptrolle übernehmen. Er erzählt von seinem Leben und wie er sich durch die gefährlichen Kriegsjahre gekämpft und immer wieder auf Kosten anderer Menschen sein Leben gelebt hat. Auf dem Schiff begegnet er 1928 einem bekannten Komponisten und dessen Frau Mecha. Beide spüren eine Zuneigung zueinander und doch halten sie sich (noch) auf Abstand. Mecha tanzt mit der gleichen Leidenschaft Tango wie der Eintänzer und so verbringen sie die Abende auf dem Schiff und bald schon auch in den Clubs von Argentinien. Stets mit dabei ist der Ehemann, der nach Inspiration sucht. Der Eintänzer zeigt ihnen das „echte“ Leben ohne viel Geld, Ruhm und Anerkennung. Nach der Reise trennen sich die Wege der Reisenden und des Eintänzers und der Leser springt in der Zeit nach vorn. 30 Jahre später treffen sie sich zufällig wieder und sind nun in einem reiferen Alter. Das Leben hat sie gezeichnet. Wieder werden Erinnerungen wach und so erfährt der Leser, was in den Jahren dazwischen geschehen ist. Die zweite Begegnung wird beschrieben, die Erfahrungen, die Ängste und die Wut. Es dreht sich dabei vieles um Missverständnisse, Hoffnung und die Liebe. Die Geschichte ist rundum gelungen. Der leichte Schreibstil von Pérez-Reverte lässt sich gut lesen und so kann man ohne viele Probleme in die Geschichte eintauchen. Die Beschreibungen sind teilweise sehr detailliert, so dass man sich auch gut in die verschiedenen Zeiten hinein versetzen kann. Schwierig fand ich die Zeitsprünge, da sie ohne Zwischenüberschriften stattfanden. Vom hier und jetzt wieder auf das Schiff in das Jahr 1928 zurück und dann wieder zum Schachturnier gegen die Russen. Kleine Kapitelüberschriften hätten diese Zeitsprünge vereinfacht. Wer sich für den Tango und Schach interessiert, kann in diesem Buch vieles davon lesen. Ich fand beides manchmal zu detailliert beschrieben, so dass die Passagen etwas lang wurden. Die Konkurrenz zwischen den Schachspielern bzw. deren Nationen fand ich wiederum interessant und spannend. Auch die Strategien, die die Charaktere verfolgten, waren gut, wenn auch manchmal etwas übertrieben. Insgesamt ein lesenswertes Buch, welches so manche Überraschung bereit hält und durch seine verschiedenen Blickwinkel immer wieder neue Eindrücke entstehen lässt.

  • Miguel
    2019-01-22 09:09

    Não se trata do meu romance preferido de Pérez-Reverte, que continua a ser o Cemitério dos Barcos Sem Nome, nem terá o fôlego magistral de Assédio, mas é um romance magnífico, escrito com mão hábil e rigorosa, e com as caracteristicas habituais do autor, desde a pesquisa riquíssima ao desenho perfeito das personagens, passando por uma certa ousadia moral ou ética, em que o que distingue o cavalheiro do canalha não é o que se faz, mas quem e como o faz.O primeiro capítulo do livro é perfeito, tão cinzelado que parece uma escultura, e tem o condão de nos prender de imediato, e com total submissão, a esta história do século XX, passada em três tempos narrativos distintos (1928, 1937 e 1966), que mistura xadrez (um dos temas preferidos do autor), tango, espionagem e o roubo de jóias, ao mesmo tempo que permite a Pérez-Reverte falar da guerra civil de Espanha e da sombra tenebrosa do fascismo europeu. Isto, é claro, sem ceder um milímetro que seja ao romanesco e à aventura, como de resto acontece na generalidade dos seus livros. E ainda, como brinde, uma das melhores personagens femininas de Pérez-Reverte, ele que já criou uma galeria impressionante de mulheres literárias.

  • Lilisa
    2018-12-29 11:58

    Riveting novel that takes the reader from Buenos Aires to Nice to Sorrento, not necessarily in that order. I enjoyed the way the author moved back and forth in time and place rather seamlessly - there was a certain grace in the movement between time and place, fitting given the tango theme. Handsome, suave and charming but penniless Max Costa encounters beautiful, rich, enigmatic and married Mecha Inzunza aboard a ship sailing from Europe to Buenos Aires. They tango…the encounter continues briefly in Buenos Aires. Next stop Nice. And then Sorrento. Perez-Reverte keeps the thrill going as he endows Max with the trails of charm, likability and the ability to treat people - regardless of their stature - with grace and respect - despite being a scoundrel. He reminds me of the character Pierce Brosnan played in The Thomas Crown Affair. I thought the ending of the Sorrento encounter fell flat and the book may have stretched out a bit. But overall a good, fast-paced summer read that, for the most part, kept me on my toes wondering how it would end.

  • Annie
    2019-01-16 13:50

    When Max Costa signed up as a ballroom dancer for the Cap Polonio in 1928, he didn’t know he would meet a woman who would haunt him for the rest of his life. To be fair to Mecha Inzunza, she didn’t know she was going to meet the love of her life on a trip to Buenos Aires, either. Arturo Pérez-Reverte’s What We Become (translated by Nick Caistor and Lorenza Garcia) follows Max and Mecha over forty years, from Buenos Aires in 1928 to Nice in 1938 to Sorrento in 1964. What We Become is the story of two different kinds of scoundrels who keep getting caught up in their own schemes, though there is always the hope that this time will be different...Read the rest of my review at A Bookish Type. I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley for review consideration.

  • Mireya
    2018-12-25 12:13

    Últimamente he leído libros que han merecido tres estrellas y son mucho mejores que este, pero no quiero darle dos, tal vez por mis estándares le daría dos y medio si se pudiera, en fin.Que puedo decir del libro, repetitivo y lento, tiene sus chispazos al principio y al final, siendo esté la mejor parte, una historia de espías, gigolos, ladrones todos los clichés que te imagines para hacer alguna película (siento motivación del autor para algo más con toda alevosía y ventaja), nunca pudo atraparme como lector. Algo que no entendí fue la portada, si el libro se ubica en los finales de los 20 y 30 para luego saltarse a los mediados de los 60 para que pone esa foto que esta situada en los 55, cuando algo no me gusta me pongo más critica en todo, ¿Será por las perlas? que es un motivo del libro, me pregunto yo.

  • Margarida
    2019-01-20 08:07

    Max Costa, o ladrão de luva branca; Mecha Inzunza, a mulher da alta sociedade bela, inteligente, provocadora. ARP escreveu um romance brilhante, profusamente detalhado, desde o tango dançado nos arrabaldes de Buenos Aires, aos anos antes da segunda guerra mundial, fascismo, guerra civil de Espanha, até à descrição de um roubo de um cofre - quase que saímos peritos só de ler esse excerto - até Sorrento, Itália, anos 60 e um campeonato de xadrez. Pelo meio, um colar, um amor que perdura e um acto heróico: cavalheiro até ao fim.

  • Kathy
    2019-01-20 13:04

    Perfect book to read at airport and on plane. Had I read this book at home I think I may have found it slow. For my travel needs, however, the pace was appreciated, taking me into the atmosphere of the 1920's and allowing me to accept the portrayal of a "gentleman thief" who was no gentleman. We follow the fates of two major characters, a tango of love with years of separation between their dances.

  • Kaloyana
    2019-01-06 08:59

    Не е моето нещо, но съм сигурна, че се харесва на много читатели.

  • Mariel (TheCrownedGoddessReads)
    2019-01-10 08:12

    Ese no es el final que quería, pero me parece adecuado. Me ha gustado mucho esta historia de seducción, espías, ladrones de finas maneras y, me atrevo a decir, de amor.Reverte, nos hemos reconciliado.

  • Rita
    2019-01-09 14:48

    Que cursi es Pérez Reverte. Como le gusta la floritura del lenguaje y su lucimiento personal. Una pena, porque la historia podría haber sido muy bonita si ni se hubiese empeñado en darnos una lección magistral sobre el tango, o el ajedrez.

  • Gloria
    2018-12-26 06:49

    Max is the consummate con man. Men envy him and women cannot resist him. Born into slums, he extricates himself from that life and lands in the world of the rich and beautiful using his handsome looks and skill dancing the tango to carve out a new life. He's a thief. In the 1920s, he meets Mecha and her rare pearl necklace on a cruise liner. Mecha is elusive and erotic and his world no longer operates as planned. Now Max is a thief and a spy.Over four decades, Max and Mecha meet just three times, always with simmering passion. Mecha has married twice and now has a grown son squaring off against a highly protected Soviet Grand Master chess champion. She wants Max, now in his 60s, to pull off one last difficult caper. This is an elegant tale of intrigue and betrayal with a unique invitation into the sophisticated world of the tango, high-stakes chess, the French Riviera and the Spanish Civil War. This has the tone of an old black-and-white film with all its tension and glamour.

  • Karen
    2019-01-04 15:09

    I enjoyed some aspects of this book, but not others. The writing felt stilted to me, which was probably a translation issue. But beyond that, I thought the characters were not fully realized, and were generally unlikeable. The main female character was a walking cliché of sexism, seemingly developed to represent "womanhood" in that way that men idealize and romanticize women. The main male character was a bit more nuanced, but just not very believable. Neither of them lived in the world with an internal compass or sense of ethics, which I found depressing. The first half of the novel was very slow in plot development, but I was glad to see that the action picked up a bit in the second half. I enjoyed the subplot about chess, the description of places in Europe I've never been, and most especially, the exploration of the impact of socioeconomic class on relationships and on how we view the world.

  • Ana Zaragoza
    2019-01-09 14:06

    No me ha gustado nada, los altos en el tiempo no me gustan en ningún libro, me confunden me ponen nerviosa y en este libro más. En muchas ocasiones no sabía en qué tiempo leía. El final me ha parecido flojo. Esperaba otra cosa. Otro libro más de Pérez Reverte que no me gusta