Project Description

Short Story Award Juan Rulfo 2000Eduardo Antonio Parra

Mexico

Eduardo Antonio Parra was born in León/Guanajuato, North Mexico, in 1965. Several volumes of stories have proven his extraordinary narrative talent. In 2000 he won the Short Story Award Juan Rulfo which is awarded by Radio France International in Paris. Parra received a grant from the Guggenheim Foundation in 2001, and a further one in the following year by the State of Mexico. In 2009 his story collection SOMBRAS DETRÁS DE LA VENTANA has been awarded the Prix Antonin Artaud, which includes the publication in France. The Jury praised Parra’s book as an exceptional narrative masterpiece, creating a world of its own, emphasizing the author’s capacity to give an acute insight into peculiar human situations.

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Eduardo Antonio Parra© Marcelo Uribe

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Labyrinth

Two castaways meet one night in a bar. They know each other from the past, from when they were other people. One was a teacher and a football coach; the other, Darío, was his pupil. Now, to extinguish the memory, they drink with the same ferocious discipline, but Darío feeds on a pain that is still too vivid: of a night, nine years ago, in which two rival gangs of narco-traffickers finished off their town El Edén. That night, after curfew, Darío goes out with his girlfriend to look for his younger brother. In an explosion he loses Norma. Parra uses elegant narrative tricks that guide the reader with a beautiful and subtle rhythm through Darío‘s labyrinth of memories. Labyrinth (“Laberinto”) gives a voice to the victims, normal people who are simply “collateral damage” in a battle that is alien to them, giving space for human relationships and a love story that in all its intensity and passion illuminates the novel – love in times of war.

Quotes

Labyrinth

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No Man’s Land // The Borders of the Night

His stories are highly topical and he can be seen as a chronicler of the profound changes in his region, the North of Mexico. The deceptive proximity to the USA, beyond the Rio Bravo, decides upon the fate of the people who live there. The men leave, perhaps lucky enough to cross the river without being noticed, though often their first attempt fails and leads to death. The women stay behind in the inhospitable countryside, having to bring children into the world all on their own, waiting all their lives for their men to return. The stories in No Man’s Land (“Tierra de nadie”) and The Borders of the Night (“Los límites de la noche”) are exciting, sometimes erotic and mostly dramatic, even tragic. It is especially Parra’s language, simple but nevertheless precise, which touches the reader and gives his texts a timeless note.

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Nostalgia for the Shadow

In his first novel, Nostalgia for the Shadow (“Nostalgia de la sombra”), Parra delivers a study on the personality of a man, who initially kills in order to survive. This experience leads to the transformation from man to beast. Written from the perspective of the murderer, the novel forces its reader to identify with this role. Nostalgia de la sombra is a complex thriller, which increases the suspense by trapping its reader in a conflicting state of disgust and fascination.

Quotes

No Man’s Land // The Borders of the Night // Nostalgia for the Shadow

RIGHTS

NOVELS
Labyrinth (“Laberinto”)
Mexico City: Literatura Random House 2019, 263 p.
France: Zulma

Nostalgia for the Shadow (“Nostalgia de la sombra”)
Mexico City: Joaquín Mortíz (Planeta) 2002, 300 p.
Italy: La Linea 2012

Juarez. The Stone Face (“Juárez. El rostro de piedra”)
Mexico City: RHM 2008
25,000 copies sold

STORIES
Banished (“Desterrados”)
Mexico City: Era 2013, 139 p.
Italy: Musicaos

Shadows Behind the Window (“Sombras detrás de la ventana”)
Mexico City: Era 2009, 441 p.
(Compilation of former story volumes)

No One Saw Them Leave (“Nadie los vio salir”)
Mexico City: Era 2001, 37 p.
France: L’Atalante 2005 (avail.) · Spain: Txalaparta 2001 · Uruguay: Trilce

No Man’s Land (“Tierra de nadie”)
Mexico City: Era 1999, 141 p.
Canada: Boréal 2003 · Chile: LOM 2002 · France: Zulma · Portugal: Oficina do Livro · Spain: Txalaparta 2001 · Uruguay: Trilce 2002 · USA: City Lights 2004 (selection of short stories from No Man’s Land and The Borders of the Night)

The Borders of the Night (“Los límites de la noche”)
Mexico City: Era 1996, 134 p.
Spain: Txalaparta 2002 · France: Zulma 2011

ANTHOLOGIES
Norte. Una antología
Mexico City: Era 2015, 344 p. (Editor)

In cooperation with ERA, Mexico