Juan Gabriel Vásquez - The Shape of the Ruins - Quercus

Time remaining

  • -- days
  • -- hours
  • -- minutes
  • -- seconds
Other Formats
  • Paperback £16.99
    More information
    • ISBN:9780857056597
    • Publication date:03 May 2018
  • Paperback £10.99
    More information
    • ISBN:9780857056610
    • Publication date:02 May 2019

The Shape of the Ruins

By Juan Gabriel Vásquez

  • E-Book
  • £P.O.R.

The most ambitious and rewarding novel to date by the acclaimed Colombian author

"Like Don DeLillo's JFK-themed Libra, the novel is an intoxicating blend of fact and fiction" Glasgow Herald

"A masterful writer" Nicole Krauss

"A highly sophisticated, fast-moving political thriller set in Colombia and an excellent read" Alan Furst

"A dazzlingly choreographed network of echoes and mirrorings" T.L.S.

It takes the form of personal and formal investigations into two political assassinations - the murders of Rafael Uribe Uribe in 1914, the man who inspired García Márquez's General Buendia in One Hundred Years of Solitude, and of the charismatic Jorge Eliécer Gaitán, the man who might have been Colombia's J.F.K., gunned down on the brink of success in the presidential elections of 1948. Separated by more than 30 years, the two murders at first appear unconnected, but as the novel progresses Vásquez reveals how between them they contain the seeds of the violence that has bedevilled Colombia ever since.

The Shape of the Ruins is Vásquez's most ambitious, challenging and rewarding novel to date. His previous novel, The Sound of Things Falling, won Spain's Alfaguara Prize, Italy's Von Rezzori Prize and the 2014 Dublin IMPAC literary Award.

Winner of the Prémio Literário Casino da Póvoa 2018
Finalist for the Bienal de Novela Mario Vargas Llosa 2016
Finalist for the Premio Bottari Lattes Grinzane 2017
Finalist for the Prix Fémina
Finalist for the Prix Médicis

Translated from the Spanish by Anne McLean

Biographical Notes

Juan Gabriel Vásquez was born in Bogotá in 1973. His previous books include the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award winner and international bestseller The Sound of Things Falling, as well as The Informers, The Secret History of Costaguana and Reputations, which was awarded the Royal Spanish Academy Prize. He has translated works by Joseph Conrad, John Dos Passos and Victor Hugo, amongst others. His books have been translated in twenty-eight languages and forty countries. In 2016 he was made Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et de Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture. After sixteen years in France, Belgium and Spain, he now lives in Bogotá.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9780857056603
  • Publication date: 03 May 2018
  • Page count:
  • Imprint: MacLehose Press
One of the most original new writers of Latin American Literature. — Mario Vargas Llosa
For anyone who has read the entire works of Gabriel García Márquez and is in search of a new Colombian novelist, then Juan Gabriel Vásquez . . . is a thrilling new discovery. — Colm Tóibín, Guardian.
A masterful writer . . . Juan Gabriel Vásquez has many gifts--intelligence, wit, energy, a deep vein of feeling--but he uses them so naturally that soon enough one forgets one's amazement at his talents, and then the strange, beautiful sorcery of his tale takes hold — Nicole Krauss
Like Don DeLillo's JFK-themed Libra, the novel is an intoxicating blend of fact and fiction — Malcolm Forbes, Glasgow Herald
Juan Gabriel Vásquez's The Shape of the Ruins is a highly sophisticated, fast-moving political thriller set in Colombia and an excellent read — Alan Furst
Juan Gabriel Vásquez's latest and most ambitious novel.... A dazzlingly choreographed network of echoes and mirrorings — Times Literary Supplement
With utmost skill, Vásquez has us accompany him in his detective work, proposing a reflection on ghosts from the past and the inheritance of blame, doubt and fear — El Pais
Absolutely hypnotic, a display of tense, agile, intelligent narrative, it takes conspiracy to a whole other level — El Cultural
Assembled with satisfying complexity . . . it's his most ambitious and accomplished work yet. — Daniel Hahn, Prospect
This clever, labyrinthine, thoroughly enjoyable historical novel by the Colombian author of The Informers and The Sound of Things Falling entangles the two deaths and investigates the internecine politics that lay behind them. — M John Harrison, Guardian
Beautifully voiced by his serial translator Anne McLean, Vásquez writes with the elliptical feints and ruses of a story-teller who admires Joseph Conrad in his most delphic moods. The result is sly, subtle, captivating. — Boyd Tonkin, Spectator.
The most famous novelist to come out of Colombia since Gabriel García Márquez. His subtle, nuanced fiction uses the tools of documentary reportage - historical sleuthing and interviews with witnesses - to steer readers through the nation's labyrinthine past — 1843 Mag (Economist)
[A] gripping novel by one of Colombia's finest authors — Angel Gurria-Quintana, Financial Times
MacLehose Press

The King's Fool

Mahi Binebine
Authors:
Mahi Binebine
Quercus

Unfollow Me

Charlotte Duckworth
Authors:
Charlotte Duckworth
MacLehose Press

The Last Days of El Comandante

Alberto Barrera Tyszka
Authors:
Alberto Barrera Tyszka

Venezuela 2012: The President's illness casts a shadow over the lives of his citizens - he divides opinion, but life without him is almost unimaginable. Miguel Sanabria is a retired oncologist, ambivalent towards the President but caught between a virulently anti-Chávez wife and a equally vehement pro-Chávez brother. He is asked by his nephew to hide a mobile phone carrying secret footage that could shed new light on the President's condition.His neighbour Fredy has found a fresh angle for a new book about Chávez, but to take advantage he must agree to a "green-card" marriage and leave his girlfriend and their son for two months, even as their landlady plots to repossess their home.In another apartment live nine-year-old María and her neurotic, near-agoraphobic mother. Taken out of school to be educated at home, María turns to internet chat rooms for company, while her mother's fears about the city's endemic violence are proved tragically prescient.The fates and fortunes of these neighbours will prove inextricably entwined as the hour of the President's death draws ever closer.REVIEWS FOR THE SICKNESS"A great book" Michael Morpurgo"Powerful themes and powerful writing" Susan HillTranslated from the Spanish by Rosalind Harvey

MacLehose Press

The Archipelago of Another Life

Andreï Makine
Authors:
Andreï Makine

On the far eastern borders of the Soviet Union, in the sunset of Stalin's reign, soldiers are massing for a war that could end all wars, for in the atomic age man has sown the seeds of his destruction. Among them is Pavel Gartsev. Orphaned, scarred by the last great war and unlucky in love, he is an instant victim for the petty apparatchiks and career abusers who thrive within the Red Army's ranks. Coerced into joining the efforts to recapture an escaped prisoner of the gulags, Gartsev joins a small band of unlikely comrades - cynics, sadists and heroes - as they plunge into the forest depths of the Siberian taiga. But the fugitive, capable, cunning and entirely at home in this terrain, proves no easy prey. And gradually, as the pursuit goes on, and the pursuers are struck by a remarkable discovery, Gartsev is forced to confront both the worst within himself and the tantalising prospect of another, purer life.Translated from the French by Geoffrey Strachan

MacLehose Press

Perfect Light

Marcello Fois
Authors:
Marcello Fois

Cristian is enterprising and determined. Maddalena is tenacious and quite able to imagine - and defend - her own future. Cristian and Maddalena have always known each other, and if fate had not gone awry they might already be married. But between them, exactly in the middle, there is Domenico: Cristian's childhood friend who has grown up alongside him like a brother. And when Cristian succumbs to the fate of the Chironis - that curse of illnesses, murders and suicides that has blighted his family over the years - it is Domenico that Maddalena marries. Taking his trilogy of the Chironi family up to the present day, Marcello Fois has woven a delicately detailed story, full of dormant passions, plot twists, betrayals and reconciliations. The story of one family on a tiny islandhas a universality, a humanity and a power to speak to any one of us.

Quercus

All Summer With You

Beth Good
Authors:
Beth Good
MacLehose Press

The Carrier

Mattias Berg
Authors:
Mattias Berg

The man with the nuclear briefcase has gone rogue - Mission Impossible meets the Hunt for Red October "I don't think I have read such a philosophical, knowledge-studded and realistic adventure novel since Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose" Göteborgs-PostenErasmus Levine has a job like no other He travels with the President of the United States at all times, and holds in his hands the power to obliterate life as we know it. He is the man with the nuclear briefcase, part of a crack team of top-secret operatives established after 9/11, led by a man codenamed Edelweiss. But not even Edelweiss is party to the identity of their ultimate authority, known only as Alpha.Erasmus Levine has a secretFor years he has been receiving cryptic messages from Alpha, an elaborate communication that began with the words we two against the world. Levine begins thinking of escape: his chance comes during an official visit to Sweden, when the alarm sounds in Stockholm's Grand Hotel.But Alpha has other plansFrom their first meeting in a network of tunnels and bunkers beneath the city, Levine is drawn into a plan to eliminate the world's nuclear arsenals. But is controlled demolition really the endgame? Could he be working towards a controlled apocalypse, a doomsday plot to wipe humanity from the face of the earth?Translated from the Swedish by George Goulding

Quercus

The Flatshare

Beth O'Leary
Authors:
Beth O'Leary

MacLehose Press

The Faculty of Dreams

Sara Stridsberg
Authors:
Sara Stridsberg
Quercus

The Lost Son

Prue Leith
Authors:
Prue Leith
MacLehose Press

Soldiers of Salamis

Javier Cercas
Authors:
Javier Cercas

The International Bestseller of the Spanish Civil War - Winner of the Independent Foreign Fiction PrizeIn the final moments of the Spanish Civil War, fifty prominent Nationalist prisoners are executed by firing squad. Among them is the writer and fascist Rafael Sanchez Mazas. As the guns fire, he escapes into the forest, and can hear a search party and their dogs hunting him down. The branches move and he finds himself looking into the eyes of a militiaman, and faces death for the second time that day. But the unknown soldier simply turns and walks away. Sanchez Mazas becomes a national hero and the soldier disappears into history. As Cercas sifts the evidence to establish what happened, he realises that the true hero may not be Sanchez Mazas at all, but the soldier who chose not to shoot him. Who was he? Why did he spare him? And might he still be alive?

MacLehose Press

Lord of All the Dead

Javier Cercas
Authors:
Javier Cercas

Lord of All the Dead is a courageous journey into Javier Cercas' family history and that of a country collapsing from a fratricidal war. The author revisits Ibahernando, his parents' village in southern Spain, to research the life of Manuel Mena. This ancestor, dearly loved by Cercas' mother, died in combat at the age of nineteen during the battle of the Ebro, the bloodiest episode in Spain's history. Who was Manuel Mena? A fascist hero whose memory is an embarrassment to the author, or a young idealist who happened to fight on the wrong side? And how should we judge him, as grandchildren and great-grandchildren of that generation, interpreting history from our supposed omniscience and the misleadingperspective of a present full of automatic answers, that fails to consider the particularities of each personal and family drama?Wartime epics, heroism and death are some of the underlying themes of this unclassifiable novel that combines road trips, personal confessions, war stories and historical scholarship, finally becoming an incomparable tribute to the author's mother and the incurable scars of an entire generation.

MacLehose Press

White Shadow

Roy Jacobsen
Authors:
Roy Jacobsen
riverrun

Prefecture D

Hideo Yokoyama
Authors:
Hideo Yokoyama

A collection of four novellas: each taking place in 1998, each set in the world of Six Four, and each centring around a mystery and the unfortunate officer tasked with solving it.SEASON OF SHADOWS"The force could lose face . . . I want you to fix this." Personnel's Futawatari receives a horrifying memo forcing him to investigate the behaviour of a legendary detective with unfinished business.CRY OF THE EARTH"It's too easy to kill a man with a rumour." Shinto of Internal Affairs receives an anonymous tipoff alleging a Station Chief is visiting the red-light district ­- a warning he soon learns is a red herring.BLACK LINES"It was supposed to be her special day." Section Chief Nanao, responsible for the force's 49 female officers, is alarmed to learn her star pupil has not reported for duty, and is believed to be missing.BRIEFCASE"We need to know what he's going to ask." On the eve of a routine debate, Political Liaison Tsuge learns a wronged politician is preparing his revenge. He must now quickly dig up dirt to silence him.Prefecture D continues Hideo Yokoyama's exploration of the themes of obsession, saving face, office politics and inter-departmental conflicts. Placing everyday characters between a rock and a hard place and then dialling up the pressure, he blends and balances the very Japanese with the very accessible, to spectacular effect.

Quercus

The Lemon Tree Hotel

Rosanna Ley
Authors:
Rosanna Ley
MacLehose Press

A Bond Undone

Jin Yong
Authors:
Jin Yong
Quercus

Anyone for Seconds?

Laurie Graham
Authors:
Laurie Graham

'Entirely original, this makes us laugh a lot and take a long look at our lives. I absolutely adored it!' KATIE FFORDEThe laugh-out-loud sequel to Perfect Meringues - can former queen of the TV cooks Lizzie Partridge claw her way back into the nation's hearts?Life has been going downhill for ex-TV chef Lizzie Partridge ever since she spectacularly ended her television career by throwing a chocolate mousse at the host of Midlands This Morning. Her partner Tom has left her, Nigella and Jamie have got the cookery world sewn up, and now her cookery column - her last bit of work - has been axed. Surely the only way is up from here?In a desperate bid for sympathy and attention she runs away, from the gas bill and the mouse under the sink, and in wet and wintry Aberystwyth she experiences a brush with her past and a glimmer of new prospects. And when her nephew's girlfriend - a TV producer - has the bright idea to reunite her with her former nemesis and target of the mousse attack in a new show, it seems like things could be going Lizzie's way again after all!

Jo Fletcher Books

Blood Cruise

Mats Strandberg
Authors:
Mats Strandberg
riverrun

All Rivers Run Free

Natasha Carthew
Authors:
Natasha Carthew

A woman on the edge of the sea finds a girl on the edge of life. Brittle but not yet broken, Ia Pendilly ekes out a fierce life in a caravan on the coast of Cornwall. In years of living with Bran - her embattled, battering cousin and common law husband - she's never yet had her own baby. So when she discovers the waif washed up on the shore, Ia takes the risk and rescues her. And the girl, in turn, will rescue something in Ia - bringing back a memory she's lost, giving her the strength to escape, and leading her on a journey downriver.It will take her into the fringes of a society she's shunned, collapsed around its own isolation. It will take her through a valley ravaged by floods, into a world not too far from reckoning. It will take her in search of her sister, and the dark remembrance of their parting. It will take her, break her, remake her, in the shapes of freedom.Natasha Carthew is a startling new voice from beyond the limits of common urban experience. She tells a tale of marginalisation and motherhood in prose that crashes like waves on rocks; rough, breathless and beautiful.

riverrun

Almost Love

Louise O'Neill
Authors:
Louise O'Neill

For fans of Marian Keyes, Dolly Alderton and Holly Bourne, ALMOST LOVE is one of the most addictive and heartbreaking reads of 2018'Compulsive' Sunday Times'Breaks another boundary' Irish Times'A must-read' Image 'Honest and poignant' Elle 'Intelligent and compelling' Daily Mail When Sarah falls for Matthew, she falls hard.So it doesn't matter that he's twenty years older. That he sees her only in secret. That, slowly but surely, she's sacrificing everything else in her life to be with him. Sarah's friends are worried. Her father can't understand how she could allow herself to be used like this. And she's on the verge of losing her job.But Sarah can't help it. She is addicted to being desired by Matthew. And love is supposed to hurt.Isn't it?