I am preparing Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude for the exam. Here is a brief outline of my preparations:
-magical realism (and its relation to legitimate history, and Marquez's points therein)
-memory (the first paragraph introduced this theme pretty well, with the references to the past, present, and future)
-fate (circular history, pig tails, the whole shabang; also brings to mind the motif of death and love at the same time regarding their wacky family tree).
"Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice."
"Thought the long history of the family the insistent repetition of names had made (Ursula) draw some conclusions that seemed to be certain. While the Aurelianos were withdrawn, but with lucid minds, the José Arcadios were impulsive and enterprising, but they were marked with a tragic sign."
"saw the epigraph of the parchments perfectly paced in the order of man’s time and space: The first of the line is tied to a tree and the last is being eaten by the ants. . . . Melquíades had not put events in the order of a man’s conventional time, but had concentrated a century of daily episodes in such a way that they coexisted in one instant."
Hope these help!