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Austral

Megan McDowell

"A tender and thoughtful exploration of the painful irony of being alive and our attempts to make sense of the past as well as the present" KATHARINA VOLCKMER, author of The Appointment

"A reflection on identity, rootlessness and violence - Fonseca's most ambitious, most complex and most accomplished novel to date" JAVIER CERCAS, author of Soldiers of Salamis


"A beautifully knotted novel which unfolds with every traced layer of its deeply affecting narrative alongside a meditation on memory, mystery and vanishing. Sebaldian in its turns, Austral is a novel of profound questions" GUY GUNARATNE, author of Mister, Mister

A dazzling novel about the traces we leave, the traces we erase and the traces we seek to rebuild.

In this innovative novel three losses and three quests are pursued. English writer Aliza Abravanel tries, in a battle with aphasia, to finish her book. A last indigenous speaker is confronted with the fading of his culture and language while an anthropologist struggles to prevent it. And through the construction of an esoteric theatre of memory, a survivor of the Guatemalan genocide of the 1970s and '80s seeks to recover the memories lost after the traumas of war. And behind these three threads lies the narrator's own story: Julio, a disillusioned university professor, must try to understand and complete his friend Aliza's novel, and come to terms with a past he shared with her but has blanked for thirty years.

From the Guatemalan wilderness to the high Peruvian Amazon, passing through Nueva Germania, the anti-Semitic commune founded in Paraguay by Nietzsche's sister, Austral takes us on a long journey south, following a trail of ecological and cultural destruction to excavate contemporary xenophobia.

"Reminiscent of the best of Bolaño, Borges and Calvino" Guardian

Translated from the Spanish by Megan McDowell

  • Classification : GENERAL & LITERARY FICTION
  • Pub Date : APR 25, 2024
  • Imprint : Maclehose Press
  • Page Extent : 224
  • Binding : PB
  • ISBN : 9781529422610
  • Price : INR 899
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Megan McDowell

Nicolás Giacobone was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1975. He shared an Academy Award and Golden Globe for co-writing Birdman, which also won the Academy Award for Best Picture. He is the author of the novel The Crossed-Out Notebook.>

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