The Last Days of El Comandante

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Product Details

University of Texas Press
Publish Date
5.0 X 0.9 X 7.9 inches | 0.6 pounds
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About the Author

Alberto Barrera Tyszka is a poet, novelist, television screenwriter, and journalist. He is the author of three short story collections, four poetry collections, four novels, and three nonfiction books, including a best-selling and critically acclaimed biography of Hugo Chávez. Rosalind Harvey has translated books by authors including Enrique Vila-Matas, Héctor Abad, Elvira Navarro, Guadalupe Nettel and Juan Pablo Villalobos. Jessie Mendez Sayer is a literary translator, editor, and former literary scout.


"The stories Barrera Tyszka presents [in The Last Days of El Comandante] offer a solid slice of the uncertainty of Venezuelan life of the time...Barrera Tyszka is particularly good on the everyday--and also on the odd Cuban connection and the complex interplay between Cuban (national and personal) interests and Venezuelan ones at the time."--The Complete Review (01/30/2020)
"Mr. Tyszka is a versatile writer who merits wider attention...[The Last Days of El Comandante blends] brisk, ironic parables with dryly disenchanted commentary. The novel is...valuable especially for Sanabria's insights into the destructively politicized nature of Chávez's death. His illness was something that happened to his body, in private, but the mythology he spun from it was something that happened to everyone else. As Sanabria remarks, with customary concision, 'The other face of illness is miracle.'"-- (03/27/2020)
"There is nothing quite like fiction to grasp the true nature of an oppressive regime. Novels allow us to witness the effect of oppression on the day-to-day activities of ordinary people, and on their often failed attempts to enjoy some sort of private life in the face of the regime's intrusions. [The Last Days of El Comandante shows] how tenuous those attempts have become in Venezuela over the past decade...The Last Days of El Comandante is...enthralling...revelatory...with its skilfully wrought atmosphere of suspense and energetic prose, well translated by Rosalind Harvey."-- (11/29/2019)