La superficie más honda
Emiliano Monge

SHORT STORIES | 2015 | 152 pages

The eleven stories gathered in this book depict the ghost of a constellation; and the sign that presides this constellation is Violence. La superficie más honda is a bestiary of man as the wolf himself: from the dry intimacy of familiar horror to the voracity of a lynching—whether it’s physical or by the media—, both rage and erosion are king.

As if the characters were pawns of a vaporous, but absolute will, in these stories personal destiny and social transformation act as an anonymous force that arranges or—shall we say—dissolves everything.

With a merciless style, Emiliano Monge constructs precise atmospheres of oppression. From the first words of each story, a looming vagueness insinuates itself, an emptiness that expands fiercely to ultimately push the microuniverses to a final dissolution. Black holes of irony are everywhere, but in this case humor does not offer relief or a way out—it only makes the corrosion even deeper. Characters—and readers—begin to suspect that they may have never been here, on this thin surface we call the world—one where in the end there is no solace but escape.


There are titles that are perfect: La superficie más honda (The Deepest Surface) is one such title. A paradox that summarizes what a good story should be, and therefore what the eleven short stories in this book are like. Short, elliptic and allergic to any kind of underlining, these are texts that hardly show circumstances, often irresolute or with just a suggested solution; but in them there is room for a country, Mexico, made of violence. And, needless to say, the violence in Mexico is directly connected to us, to our European nights out, our stereotypes of Mexican culture, our addictions, our own violence. A book that contains the world. A magnificent book, with bad vibes, and with no escape.
— Josep Maria Nadal Suau, El Cultural
Emiliano Monge is a fine narrator and a born gambler. He likes taking stylistic and mysterious risks, and his literature is marked by this trademark: searching spirit, deep and merciless auscultation of the human being and his eternal weaknesses: the anguish, the lack of affection, the abuse of power, the misery, the exhaustive control over the others, the enemy context, in addition to a unique talent for giving characters a voice. The stories of this book reveal a writer who is in control, able to grab us from the very first line… He has a touch. The angel.
— Elmer Mendoza, El Universal
With La superficie más honda, Emiliano Monge has managed to give the reader the certainty of living in his stories… If La superficie más honda can be judged on a par with the most infamous dystopias, it is because it has conceived an undesirable figure: places where it is better not to get in and from where nobody can leave.
— Robert Pliego, Mileno
As usually happens in life, Emiliano Monge’s characters make their way across the stories they inhabit and suddenly find themselves muddied in a savage situation from which they will never be able to escape. Whether it’s physical or psychological, violence is the main character of La superficie más honda, its leit motiv. This, together with the poetic language found in every story make this read a deep journey through a type of literature that aspires to move us through stories that, believe me, do not look like anything you have ever imagined before.
— Eduardo Limón, SinEmbargo
Every story in this book turns the reader’s stomach into stone. What prevails in these stories is the feeling that humanity needs to be fixed, that at some point we lost our way and now we can only be savage, violent and blinded… In what moment does a dream turn into a nightmare? It is in this ambiguous and sinister threshold that Monge, on his knees, writes La superficie más honda, which is nothing other than pure hopelessness, fear, impotence. The sudden arrival of evil.
— Gabriel Rodríguez, Metropoli Ficción

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