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The Secret History of Costaguana
Paperback - English

In the early 20th century, Joseph Conrad wrote his great novel "Nostromo," about a South American republic he named Costaguana. In "The Secret History of Costaguana," readers uncover the hidden source--and one of the great literary thefts. ...A potent mixture of history, fiction and literary gamesmanship. --Los Angeles Times
A cunning tribute to a classic. --Wall Street Journal
[A] post-modern literary revenge story." --The New York Times

An ingenious novel of historical invention from the global literary star author of The Sound of Things Falling.

On the day of Joseph Conrad's death in 1924, the Colombian-born José Altamirano begins to write and cannot stop. Many years before, he confessed to Conrad his life's every delicious detail--from his country's heroic revolutions to his darkest solitary moments. Those intimate recollections became Nostromo, a novel that solidified Conrad's fame and turned Altamirano's reality into a work of fiction. Now Conrad is dead, but the slate is by no means clear--Nostromo will live on and Altamirano must write himself back into existence.

As the destinies of real empires collide with the murky realities of imagined ones, Vásquez takes us from a flourishing twentieth-century London to the lawless fury of a blooming Panama and back in a labyrinthine quest to reclaim the past--of both a country and a man.

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Publication Date
20.57cm x 13.72cm x 2.29cm
Age Group
18 and above
College Freshman to UP
Lexile Level
About Author

McLean, Anne
Javier Cercas is the author of novels, stories and essays. His novel "Soldiers of Salamis "has sold over 500,000 copies in Spain, been filmed and has been published in twenty languages. He lives in Girona, where he teaches Spanish Literature at the University.

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