Translated from the Spanish by Anne McLean The new novel by the bestselling author of Soldiers of Salamis (1 million copies worldwide) has sold more than 160,000 copies in hardback in Spain since publication in 2009.
Javier Cercas is the author of Soldiers of Salamis, The Tenant & The Motive and The Speed of Light. He has taught at the University of Illinois and for many years was a lecturer in Spanish literature at the University of Gerona. He lives in Barcelona with his wife and son. Anne McLean is the translator of works by Carmen Martin Gaite, Julio Cortazar, Ignacio Martinez de Pison and Tomas Eloy Martinez. She has twice won the Independent Prize for Foreign Fiction: for Soldiers of Salamis by Javier Cercas in 2004 (which also won her the Valle Inclan Award), and for The Armies by Evelio Rosero in 2009.
'A brilliant reconfiguring of a key event in contemporary European
history. Audacious and wholly fascinating' * William Boyd *
'Persuasive, brilliant and absorbing' * Economist *
'Richly imagined, suspenseful and surprisingly poignant ... a reminder of how Spanish history might have taken a dramatically different turn that evening thirty years ago' * Financial Times *
'An almost Shakespearean account of soldiers, politicians, mixed motives and the lust for power' * Anne Chisholm, Sunday Telegraph *
Cercas is a master storyteller * Independent *
A mesmerising achievement * Literary Review *
Cercas forces us to abandon the fiction, the legend of the coup, and look at the pictures and story anew in all their complexity * Michael Eaude, Independent *
Always a nimble dancer on the edge of history and fiction, the Spanish writer returns with a closely researched but always dramatic account of the failed coup in 1981 that almost vanquished his country's fragile post-Franco democracy * Boyd Tonkin, Independent *