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A Novel

This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.


Eduardo Lalo is one of the most vital and unique voices of Latin American literature, but his work is relatively little known in the English-speaking world. That changes now: this masterful translation of his most celebrated novel, Simone—which won the 2013 Rómulo Gallegos International Novel Prize—will introduce an English-language audience to this extraordinary literary talent.

A tale of alienation, love, suspense, imagination, and literature set on the streets of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Simone tells the story of a self-educated Chinese immigrant student courting (and stalking) a disillusioned, unnamed writer who is struggling to make a name for himself in a place that is not exactly a hotbed of literary fame. By turns solipsistic and political, romantic and dark, Simone begins with the writer’s frustrated, satiric observations on his native city and the banal life of the university where he teaches—forces utterly at odds with the sensuality of his writing. But, as mysterious messages and literary clues begin to appear—scrawled on sidewalks and walls, inside volumes set out in bookstores, left on his answering machine and under his windshield wiper—Simone progresses into a cat-and-mouse game between the writer and his mystery stalker. When the eponymous Simone’s identity is at last revealed, the writer finds in the life of this Chinese immigrant a plight not unlike his own. Traumatized and lonely, the pair moves towards bittersweet collaborations in passion, grief, and art.

From Publishers Weekly

Aug 24, 2015 – The streets of San Juan come alive in this sparkling literary tale of love and obsession, winner of the prestigious R mulo Gallegos International Novel Prize. A mysterious woman pursues the unnamed narrator, who is a struggling writer, by leaving cryptic notes for him tucked away in books, written on the pavement and in strange emails, and taped to cinema projectors around the city. The notes show some familiarity with the writer's work and are signed "Simone." Who is this person? Why is she tracking him? The labyrinthine pursuit consumes both of them until, finally, they meet. The resulting encounter is haunting and confounding. Throughout the book, Lalo's characters are animated by aimless wandering around the city, long bookish conversations, wordplay, and an awareness of their place in the world. The narrator asks, "What are these streets but my own life?" The book ends with a debate among several writers about the role of Latin American literature that feels like it could stand alone as a manifesto on the subject. Lalo's other novels have yet to appear in English, but one hopes that will change after the release of this book; his work will find an appreciative audience in those seeking mystery and an acute attention to language.
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  • $16.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Fiction & Literature
  • Published: Nov 02, 2015
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Seller: Chicago Distribution Center
  • Print Length: 152 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: This book can only be viewed on an iOS device with Apple Books on iOS 12 or later, iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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