Category Historical fiction

On the new English translation of Eduardo Mendoza’s “Rina de gatos” and the joy of finally being able to satisfy Books on Spain’s web searchers

In 2010, a novel by Eduardo Mendoza called Riña de gatos: Madrid 1936 won Spain’s prestigious Premio Planeta and in January 2011, I reviewed it on this blog. It’s quite a fun novel, and I rather enjoyed it, mostly thanks to Mendoza’s imaginative recreation of a slightly daffy Englishman’s perspective on the all-too-familiar events of the […]

Holiday Reading (2): On not reviewing Clare Clark’s “Beautiful Lies”, or, the stranger-than-fiction lives of Gabriela and Robert Cunninghame Graham

So, back to The Holiday. As I think I might just possibly have mentioned before, the major priorities for the week, other than a touch of sightseeing and a generous sampling of sack, were swimming and reading, reading and swimming, swimming, reading, and swimming some more. And as you can see (left), the conditions were […]

Holiday Reading (1): La Catedral del Mar = the Spanish Pillars of the Earth (sort of)

So as you know, I’m interested in bestsellers, especially (but not only) in their Spanish incarnation. In fact, I have a whole blog category about them. But the problem with bestsellers is that they tend to be really, really long and, as last spring’s reading marathon showed, they seem to be getting longer all the time. What […]

This is not a review of Inma Chacon’s Tiempo de arena (runner-up, Premio Planeta 2011)

This was going to be a review of Tiempo de arena [Time of Sand], by Inma Chacón (above), which I picked up in Tenerife airport a couple of weeks ago and have been gripped by ever since. And then I finished the novel and did a bit of googling and discovered that it’s a sequel! A secret sequel! […]

Not dead yet! And here’s what I’ve been up to…

Gosh. It’s been a long time, hasn’t it? So, you’ll be pleased to know (I hope) that the post title is true. The blog and I are Not Dead Yet (look out – sound!); it’s just that various professional obligations have been keeping me busy and travelling – although my newly-acquired toy-cum-travelling-companion  means that my books […]

Helen Forrester (1919-2011), author of The Liverpool Basque, has died

I was very sad to hear today that Helen Forrester, author of the wonderful 1993 novel The Liverpool Basque, has died at the age of 92.  . Of course, The Liverpool Basque isn’t among Forrester’s best-known works- in fact, this vivid and emotional hymn to a vanished community is rarely mentioned in accounts of her career. She made […]

Premio Planeta 2011 | Javier Moro, El imperio eres tu (The Empire is You)

 This past weekend saw the award of Spain’s most prestigious prize for fiction, the Premio Planeta. This year’s winner – the Spanish novelist Javier Moro, for El imperio eres tu (The Empire is You), about the first Emperor of Brazil, Dom Pedro I (1798-1834). This, the 60th Planeta Prize, received nearly 500 entries, which is hardly […]