Scott Esposito at Literary Hub:
There are hits, and then there are smash hits, and then there are rocket ships to Mars—One Hundred Years of Solitude would qualify as the last. Estimates of its sales are around 50 million worldwide, which would put it in the range of books like The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Lolita, To Kill a Mockingbird, and 1984. College syllabi can certainly account for some of this figure, but when one considers by just how much García Márquez’s sales dwarf his fellow Boom greats—Carlos Fuentes, Mario Vargas Llosa, and Julio Cortázar—something more than higher education must be called to account. Nor is it easy to explain One Hundred Years of Solitude’s global diffusion: published in at least 44 languages, it is the most translated Spanish-language literary work after Don Quixote.
I think what can be said of this book is that it captured something vital about the historical experience of hundreds of millions of people, not only in Latin America but in other colonized lands as well. Nii Ayikwei Parkes, the award-winning British novelist born to Ghanaian immigrants, has said of the book: “[It] taught the West how to read a reality alternative to their own, which in turn opened the gates for other non-Western writers like myself and other writers from Africa and Asia.” He added that, “Apart from the fact that it’s an amazing book, it taught Western readers tolerance for other perspectives.”