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The Old Man Who Read Love Stories – Luis Sepúlveda (tr. Peter Bush)

The Old Man Who Read Love Stories – Luis Sepúlveda (tr. Peter Bush)

Houghton Mifflin

Regular price €16,95 EUR
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Our take

This short but powerful novel will transport you to the Amazonian jungle, where a remote village struggles to defend itself from nature’s wrath. Challenging our commonly accepted definition of ‘development’, Sepúlveda explores the impacts of industrialization on indigenous peoples and human relationships with nature. It will invite you to consider if we really are the masters of this planet as we tend to assume so often.
Luis Sepúlveda (1949-2020) was a Chilean novelist, playwright, journalist, and activist. A fervent opponent of Pinochet’s regime, he escaped from imprisonment in his native country in the 80s. He was exiled in Europe, where he worked for Greenpeace and other humanitarian causes. In this novel, he draws on his experience of living for a year with the indigenous Shuar people in the Amazon under a UNESCO programme.

Publisher's description

“Gripping and passionate . . . keenly recounted . . . full of poetry.”—New York Times

Antonio José Bolivar Proaño lives quietly in a river town in the rain-soaked jungle of Ecuador that is slowly being overrun by tourists and opportunists. Having lost his wife decades earlier, he takes refuge in books—paperback novels of faraway places and bittersweet love, delivered to him by the dentist who visits the village twice a year.

One day, a greedy trader pushes nature too far, setting an enraged mother ocelot on a bloody rampage through the village. The old man, a hunter who once lived among the Shuar Indians and knows the jungle better than anyone, is pressured by the village's detested mayor to join the expedition to kill the animal. Reluctantly, the old man is forced into the middle of a raging conflict between man and nature that will end in a powerfully climactic confrontation.

Praise and awards

Luis Sepúlveda received numerous prizes, including the International Grinzane Cavour Award, the Tigre Juan, the France Culture Etrangêre Award and the Taormina Award for Literary Excellence.

Magical . . . Readers will be enchanted.” — New York Times

“Sepulveda writes with a keen sense of irony and humor as harsh and colorful as the jungle itself.” — Raleigh News & Observer

“A seamless blend of simple story, mythic characters and artfully bold language.” — Memphis Commercial Appeal

Shipping & Returns

This title may take slightly longer to ship - up to 15 working days

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