Roberto Bolano’s Odd Epigraph

The Voyage Out Book Group


Just a week remains until we discuss Roberto Bolano’s novel By Night in Chile. Excitement is building. I’ve been entertained, perplexed, and engrossed in this slim book. I can’t wait to hear what everybody else thought, and I can’t wait to learn about how to better read this disjointed text. Love it, hate it, you have to have a reaction to it, and I think that’s the whole point of what we’re doing here.

This book doesn’t give you breaks. Fine. We can figure that out. But, what it does give you is a beginning. The start of this book, oddly enough, is a call to put it down and pick up another book. Bolano’s vague epigraph is as follows:

“Take off your wig.”


A little research shows this line to be pulled from a short story by G.K. Chesterton called The Purple Wig. So here are…

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