When I first met Charles Arrowby in Murdoch's The Sea, The Sea, I had this feeling that there's something fascinating about lonely old men. I had the same feeling with Marquez' nonagenarian today. Beyond the inevitable illnesses and weaknesses of many kinds, there's this sort of halo of serenity, gravity and pedantry that makes them more interesting than any other young person. I might change my mind in the near future, so there's nothing absolute about this feeling. Let me just chew it a bit more.
Compared to some of his other works, the book didn't make such a strong impression on me, however, as previously stated, his writing style makes it worth reading if only for that alone.