Thursday, November 24, 2011

Padurisima (4): "¿Para qué (no por qué, sino para qué) se escribe una novela?

El Yuma's favorite Cuban writer Leonardo Padura has just won the 2011 Roger Caillois Literary Prize for his novel 'El hombre que amaba a los perros' (2009) and in recognition of the entirety of his work as a novelist. He is the first Cuban writer to receive the award in its 20-year history.

"El hombre" was published in a French translation earlier this year and is set to some out in English in 2012.

The prize is sponsored by the Casa de América Latina of Paris, the Society of Readers and Friends of Roger Caillois, and the Pen Club of France.

Wilfredo Cancio Isla of the web site Cafe Fuerte has published a detailed story on the prize, giving an update on Padura's current projects.

These include a sneak preview of the new film "Siete Días en La Habana" at the 33rd Festival of New Latin American Film in Havana in December. Padura was one of the screenwriters for the seven-part film and worked together with director Benicio del Toro on the short entitled, "El Yuma," earlier this year.

Cancio also reports on Padura's latest work-in-progress, "Los Herejes" (The Heretics), the seventh title in his ongoing Mario Conde noir fiction series, which he expects to have finished by early 2012. This ambitious new installment in the hardboiled series is a "story about freedom as a human condition and need" and, as all of Padura's novels, is set in contemporary Cuba. However, the story begins in the 1640s in Amsterdam in the private library of Rembrandt!

Below is a brief embedded video of Padura speaking with from Madrid. Here is also a link to a talk he gave at Casa de America Latina in Paris last year.

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