The Colombian Juan Gabriel Vásquez, author of, among other works, The Informants, Secret History of Costaguana and The sound of the things when they fall, has just been recognized with the Novel Prize of the IV Mario Vargas Llosa Biennial, an event held at the University of Guadalajara until this Sunday.
The award-winning novel is Look back, a story between fiction and history that revolves around the life of the Colombian filmmaker Sergio Cabrera. “With enormous narrative ability and extraordinary prose, this work works with materials from reality, threading the present with the vicissitudes of the convulsive 20th century,” said Argentine chronicler Leila Guerriero, president of the jury, at the award ceremony.
The jury also included the participation of the Mexican Rosa Beltrán, the American Raquel Chang-Rodríguez, the Peruvian Efraín Kristal, and the Spanish Fernando Rodríguez Lafuente. The award was given unanimously.
Upon receiving the award, Vásquez pointed out that: “This novel is written from the same obsession that has animated almost all my previous books, which is that obsession to tell the space where private lives, intimate lives, collide with such mysterious forces of history and politics ”.
Mario Vargas Llosa himself celebrated the winner: “I think this biennial ends in a very good way. This award is not the result of chance. He has awarded a magnificent writer ”. In addition to the symbolic recognition, Vásquez is worth $ 100,000. The novel was published in 2020 with the Anagrama publishing house.