Author(s): Alejandro Zambra
Growing up in 1980s Chile, a young boy plays hide and seek in the suburbs of Santiago with his friends while the adults become slowly entangled in the brutality of Pinochet's regime - accomplices and victims of the brutal dictatorship. As the country shudders under authoritarian rule, the boy creates stories of his own to explain the sporadic scenes of violence, the disappearances, and the deafening silence of his mother and father. Until, on the night of the Santiago earthquake, a mysterious girl named Claudia appears among the children and the boy's world is changed forever. Now, as a young man reflecting on the tragedies of his childhood, he must find the courage to confront as an adult what he could not have known as a child, and to untangle Chile's troubled past. As he struggles to begin a novel which will encompass the clash between innocence and complicity, the boundaries between fiction and reality blur and the beautiful Claudia comes back into his life.
A rising star of Latin American literature, and one of Granta's Best of Young Spanish Language Novelists
Shortlisted for Premio Las Americas de Novela 2012.
ALEJANDRO ZAMBRA is the author of the poetry collections Bahia inutil and Mudanza, the novels Bonsai, which won the Critics Prize and the National Council Prize for Books for the best novel of the year, La vida privada de los arboles (The Private Lives of Trees) and the book of essays No leer (2010). Ways of Going Home was the winner of the Altazor Prize and the Consejo Nacional del Libro Prize, both for the best 2011 Chilean novel. He lives in Santiago and is a literature professor at the University Diego Portales.