The Shape of the Ruins
By Juan Gabriel Vásquez
The most ambitious and rewarding novel to date by the acclaimed Colombian author
The Shape of the Ruins by the Colombian writer Juan Gabriel Vásquez, whose recent novel, the best-selling Sound of Things Falling won Spain's Alfaguara Prize, Italy's Von Rezzori Prize and the 2014 Dublin IMPAC literary Award, was published to acclaim in Colombia last year and has just appeared in Spain.
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.
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.
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- Publication date:
03 May 2018
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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. — Nicole Krauss