Shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize 2019
It takes the form of personal and formal investigations into two political assassinations - the murders of Rafael Uribe Uribe in 1914, the man who inspired Garcia Marquez's General Buendia in One Hundred Years of Solitude, and of the charismatic Jorge Eliecer Gaitan, the man who might have been Colombia's J.F.K., gunned down on the brink of success in the presidential elections of 1948.
Separated by more than 30 years, the two murders at first appear unconnected, but as the novel progresses Vasquez reveals how between them they contain the seeds of the violence that has bedevilled Colombia ever since.
The Shape of the Ruins is Vasquez's most ambitious, challenging and rewarding novel to date. His previous novel, The Sound of Things Falling, won Spain's Alfaguara Prize, Italy's Von Rezzori Prize and the 2014 Dublin IMPAC literary Award.
Publisher: Quercus Publishing
Number of pages: 512
Weight: 344 g
Dimensions: 198 x 131 x 34 mm
'One of the most original new writers of Latin American Literature.' - Mario Vargas Llosa
'For anyone who has read the entire works of Gabriel Garcia Marquez and is in search of a new Colombian novelist, then Juan Gabriel Vasquez... is a thrilling new discovery.' - Colm Toibin, The Guardian
'A masterful writer... Juan Gabriel Vasquez has many gifts--intelligence, wit, energy, a deep vein of feeling--but he uses them so naturally that soon enough one forgets one's amazement at his talents, and then the strange, beautiful sorcery of his tale takes hold' - Nicole Krauss
'Like Don DeLillo's JFK-themed Libra, the novel is an intoxicating blend of fact and fiction' - Malcolm Forbes, The Glasgow Herald
'Juan Gabriel Vasquez's The Shape of the Ruins is a highly sophisticated, fast-moving political thriller set in Colombia and an excellent read' - Alan Furst
'Juan Gabriel Vasquez's latest and most ambitious novel.... A dazzlingly choreographed network of echoes and mirrorings' - The Times Literary Supplement
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“A fascinating novel about a fascinating country”
his is a wonderfully captivating and fascinating read on so many levels. How to describe it? It’s an experience, a visit to a country as it goes through the assassination of two of its politicians and the consequences... More
“Novel set in COLOMBIA”
A blend of autobiography, historical narrative and criminal investigation, The Shape of the Ruins is a gripping tale of intrigue and conspiracy set in Colombia, of how the author finds himself lured into investigating... More
“Political, humane, literary”
This is a marvellous book but, strangely for me, it's hard to put my finger precisely on what makes it so powerful and, ultimately, moving. Straddling that contested area between fact and fiction, where the... More
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