El cielo árido
Emiliano Monge

NOVEL | 2012 | 216 pages


"This is the story of a man who, without knowing it, was his century as well as the story of a place that is condensed here in a proper name: Germán Alcántara Carnero—a story of uncontrollable and natural violence that demands to be counted as a discontinuous biography and that shouldn't start here. "

Thus begins El cielo árido, the story of Germán Alcántara Carnero: his time, the men and women who lived alongside him and the nonexistent plateau where Monge distills the essences of a wild Latin America. An arid place, where the only constants seem to be solitude, the inexhaustible sun, violence, loyalty, and the daily struggle to create a set of values hat lends meaning to existence.

Narrated from the memorable moments in the life of Germán—the flight of a couple of boys to another country, the vicissitudes of an endless war, the disappearance of a helpless girl, the breaking of a strike, the rebellion of some believers, the confrontation of a son with his father, the birth of a small sick person, the pulling of a weapon, the contemplation of a murder or an ill-conceived joke. El cielo árido is a journey to the heart of human beings and a challenge to the reader—an opportunity that only great literature allows us—to cast aside the parameters by which they judge guilt and innocence.

RIGHTS: spanish PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE | dutch WERELBIBLIOTHEEK | italian LA NUOVA FRONTIERA | turkish YAPI KREDI | portuguese (brazil) BERTRAND | english (world) RESTLESS BOOKS

Lyrical and violent, The Arid Sky is a striking desert noir... It’s is hard not to hear a resemblance to Cormac McCarthy in bleak, lyrical prose like this.
— Mark Athitakis, Los Angeles Times
Rarely can we witness literature like this.
— Miguel Ángel Ángeles, Rolling Stone
A complex yet magnificent book, solid and slippery
at the same time, with poetry that blows one’s mind. A great novel.
— La Repubblica
I don’t know how to tell you this but you must get your hands on this novel. Read it as if time didn’t matter, in a remote and solitary place, and do not dare to give your copy away as a gift. And finally, may it not be a surprise if it leaves you in unrest and reminds you of something ancient and afar.
— Ricardo Baixeras, El Periódico
One of the most ambitious achievements in the last
decade of Mexican literature.
— Jaime Mesa, Lado B
Monge’s novel stands out for the plasticity of its prose, the intelligence of its approach and its revision of stereotypes.
— Patricio Pron, Letras Libres
A relentless novel that reconstructs almost a century of Mexican history with an obsessive and illuminating prose.
— Matías Néspolo, El Mundo
This book weighs down in importance just as much
as it dazzles.
— Marta Sanz, El Confidencial
High voltage writing, so lyrical it should be read out loud.
— Álvaro Enrigue

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