Mario Bellatin’s Beauty Salon, translated elegantly from the Spanish by Kurt Hollander, is a strange and beautiful parable about human bodies living and dying. Mario Bellatin’s Salon de belleza centers on the production of space, rather than on the existence of things and persons occupying or moving through an already. Mario Bellatin’s Salón de belleza centers on the production of space, rather than on the existence of things and persons occupying or moving through an already.

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Mario Bellatin’s “Beauty Salon” – Words Without Borders

What we do hear much about is the rareness and sqlon of the fish; the narrator is fascinated by the dynamics within the tank, especially those between sick and healthy fish. Goodreads helps you keep track of books df want to read.

It’s strange to see how my thoughts flow more freely now. The sole decoration consists of tanks of tropical fish whose clouded lives mirror those of the inmates. Very little action occurs and the book seems an attempt to sketch the character of this narrator, yet I still can’t salob him InBellatin moved to Cuba, where he studied screenplay writing at the International Film School Latinoamericana.

He spent two years studying theology at the seminary Santo Toribio de Mogrovejo and graduated from the University of Lima. We all float along at the whim of a world we cannot belleeza or control, like the fish subjected to the neglect of their weary owner.

Stonewall Book Award Nominee for Literature Beauty Salon is, like the fish tanks described within, a small, closed environment, although the paths that can be taken through it are many. As the salon begins to fill with the effluvium of the dying, the fish become his last grip on the old world, being an extension of his attempts to adorn himself in beauty and life. Seriously, after reading that, how can you not want to see what else comes from this man’s imagination?


Despite his insistent focus on his precious fish, despite everything he says, we see what he has done, and his actions belie his words.

Salón De Belleza

No trivia or quizzes yet. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. Yet, it is the poor, the discarded, those on the fringes of society—be it by choice or cast off for being deemed as an illness to society—that must suffer and die in pitiful conditions and solitude, often forgotten by those around them or ignored by the multitude of marching feet that pound the pavement just away beyond where they lie dying aslon a gutter.

Sep 29, brian rated it liked it. Instead the audience peppered him for more information about Nagaoka, who was said to have a nose so immense that it impeded his ability to eat.

It’s all very unsettling and the reader is left wondering if there’s any meaning to life at all or if we are the fish, easily purchased and easily discarded. Gerardo rated walon did not like it Oct 14, One of the truly frightening things is the utter lack of hope from within the narrator, who has no illusions about his fate and, given that one of his rules for the Terminal is there can be no talk of God, he does not ask moral questions of a higher power.


Beauty Salon is a page novella by the Mexican experimental novelist Mario Bellatin, a deeply unsettling account of a man watching others die in the midst of a unknown illness affecting a city, vision clouded by the murky waters of aquariums and self-isolation.

The novel was originally published inso perhaps that will have some impact on your interpretation of the mysterious illness striking the city Perhaps this is the feeling my mother had when, after years of being examined in hospitals, she was told that she had a malignant tumor…She sent me a letter I never answered. It did not earn 5 stars because it was not an uplifting book. The narrator first keeps only guppies, a fish he is told are very resilient and require little care—resiliency being a desirable trait in the eyes of someone who leads a exhausting and dangerous life.

Zeke rated it did not like it Nov 19, Published by Tusquets first published The narrator deflects questions about the apparent disconnect between his selfless actions and singular obsession with fish, sternly resisting self-examination.

Alejandra Ebllatin rated it did not like it May 18, Built on the Johns Hopkins University Campus. It is notable that the owner of the beauty salon is a homosexual man prone to cross-dressing, who occasionally engages happily in prostitution—his is a body that acts in discord with socio-sexual norms.

He allows the imperfections of the human world to intrude upon his musings on the fish.