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Reasons of State

Written by ALEJO CARPENTIER
Translator FRANCES PARTRIDGE
Introduction by STANLEY CROUCH
Format: Trade Paperback, 400 pages
Publisher: Melville House
On Sale: 10/22/2013
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-1-612-19279-6
open close ABOUT THE BOOK
In the early 1970s, friends Gabriel García Márquez, Augusto Roa Bastos and Alejo Carpentier reached a joint decision: they would each write a novel about the dictatorships then wreaking misery in Latin America. García Márquez went on to write The Autumn of the Patriarch and Roa Bastos I, the Supreme. The third novel in this remarkable trinity is Reasons of State, hailed as the most significant novel ever to come out of Cuba.

Inexplicably out of print for years, it tells the tale of the dictator of an unnamed Latin American country who has been living the life of luxury in high-society Paris. When news reaches him of a coup at home, he rushes back and crushes it with brutal military force. But returning to Paris he is given a chilly welcome, and learns that photographs of the atrocities have been circulating among his well-to-do friends.

Meanwhile World War I has broken out, and another rebellion forces the dictator back across the ocean. As he struggles with the Marxist forces beginning to find footing in his own country, Carpentier constructs a masterful and biting satire of the new world order.

“Carpentier’s writing has the power and range of a cathedral organ on the eve of the Resurrection.” The New Yorker

“Carpentier’s energy is gigantic and pell-mell, sweeping colossi on top of each other with ruthless, contemptuous daring.” The Yale Review

“A writer to be classed with Thomas Mann and W.H. Hudson.” San Francisco Chronicle
open close ABOUT THE AUTHOR
ALEJO CARPENTIER (1904-1980) was one of the most important writers of the Latin American boom. He was born in Switzerland but grew up in Havana; his European and Latin American roots allowed him a unique insight into the relationship between the new world and the old. He was arrested in 1927 for opposing the Cuban dictator Gerardo Machado y Morales, and on his release from prison escaped the country to Paris. He traveled back to Cuba in 1936, after the regime fell, then lived for a short while in Venezuela. He returned to Cuba once again in 1959, to join Fidel
Castro's revolution. He finally settled in Paris in 1966, and died there fourteen years later.

FRANCES PARTRIDGE
(1900-2004) was a member of the Bloomsbury group, a writer, and a translator from French and Spanish.