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The Secret History of Costaguana

by Juan Gabriel Vasquez

A self-deluded memoir set in war torn Colombia during the disastrous building of the Panama canal. It is based on the belief that renowned author, Joseph Conrad, on hearing the original account, rewrote it as the classic novel ‘Nostromo’ and set it in fictional Costaguana. A multi-layered literary historic novel, within a novel, and a fine example of the now demonic art of journalist ‘spin’.

Extract

Let’s clear this up once and for all: it’s not that my father wrote lies. Surprised and at the same time full of admiration, over the next few months of life with my father I began to notice the strange illness that a few years back had begun to guide his perception and therefore, his pen. Panamanian reality entered his eyes as if from a stick for measuring water depth from the shore: it folded, it bent, folded at the beginning and bent afterwards, or vice versa.
Translated by Anne McLean

Parallels

Anything by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
 

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