'Love in the Time of Cholera' explores the many layers and the multiple phases of love through the life of the protagonist, Florentino Ariza, in whom love takes roots, grows, flowers, ripens and marches without a pause towards its destiny – for it to be accepted and returned by Fermina Daza. After more than half a century of ceaseless longing, romantic serenading, tumultuous passion, excruciating bewilderment and obstinate hopefulness, Florentino Ariza finds himself at the doorstep of the world of his dreams. Half a century of being with and liking many but waiting for and worshipping just one; half a century of allowing the heart to be commanded, and the lips to be sealed, by the dictates of an emotion keenly felt and honestly experienced; half a century of accepting reality without denying the existence of the magical. It is a wonderful depiction of how love matures in bodies that are withering away; of how it sheds off the paraphernalia of fantastic promises and superficial romanticism and grows into thoughtful sharing of experiences and gentle caring touches that cover the burning passion of youth with the sublime intensity of age. The book has the fire to generate a rush of adrenalin, the pathos to bring about tears and the depth to edify and immortalize love. At the end of the 350 odd pages, the reader feels like a river finally reaching the sea after following a long meandering course and Marquez's prose brilliantly portrays the various stages of this journey as it alternates seamlessly between being languid and terse, mellow and penetrative, expansive and focused.