Las tierras arrasadas
Emiliano Monge

NOVEL | 2015 | 352 pages

* WINNER OF THE ELENA PONIATOWSKA IBEROAMERICAN PRIZE 2016 *

In the depths of the forest and of the night, car lights turn on and a group of immigrants are attacked by another group of men and women, and left hostage to the homeland they live in and their own stories. This is how this road novel begins, crossing through a nation where humans are reduced to smuggled goods, where violence is the stage where all the stories take place and where Emiliano Monge pierces into the essence of a savage Latin America. Through the kidnappers and the massive bundle of immigrants whose individuality falls into pieces, Monge leaves horror and solitude bare, and also the loyalty and hope that beat in the human heart. Las tierras arrasadas ambitiously tells the holocaust of the 21st century but also a love story between Estela and Epitafio, leaders of the group of kidnappers. A story of high stylistic voltage and shuddering pace, where fiction and reality – testimonies of immigrants who make up the interludes in the novel – weave an unexpected mosaic that is moving, disturbing and impossible to forget.

RIGHTS: spanish PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE | english (world) SCRIBE | french PHILIPPE REY | italian LA NUOVA FRONTIERA | dutch WERELDBIBLIOTHEEK

I am sure that there is no piece of journalism that honors the voices of the migrants as much as this novel does. A writing that confronts. Poetry in the carrion.
— Lydia Cacho
Reading Emiliano Monge is tuning in to a secret poetry. This novel is the paradigm of a new narrative—cathartic, direct, vital, without beating around the bush.
— Berna González Harbour, Babelia
A painful and fatal chant, Las tierras arrasadas magnificently sheds light on the thousands of nameless immigrants cast on the roads. Chilling and brutal, [the book] is a compendium of humanity in search for a better life.
— Ariane Singer, Le Monde
Monge followed the track of the kidnapped, tortured and assassinated migrants, with enough compassion as to allow them to talk, or rather moan, without refusing the other truth, the one that sets the novelist apart from the journalist. Assuming that Evil is human, the author narrates not so much the back-and-forths of the victims, dead or alive, whose souls have been torn away, but of the kidnappers, traffickers of human beings, a man and woman willing to suffer through a tragic love story while they kill. In the sea of books I have read about the hell endured by migrants, about the fierce Mexico that they cross amidst of the narco wars, I suspect that Las tierras arrasadas is one that will survive.
— Christopher Domínguez Michael, El Universal
9786073136129.jpg
BY EMILIANO MONGE:

La superficie más honda
SHORT STORIES, 2017
Las tierras arrasadas
NOVEL, 2015
Los insectos invisibles
CHILDREN'S, 2013
El cielo árido
NOVEL, 2012
Morirse de memoria
NOVEL, 2009
Arrastrar esa sombra
SHORT STORIES, 2008