Dead Girls by Selva Almada, translated by Annie McDermott / ISBN 9781916277847 / 170-page paperback with flaps from Charco Press (Edinburgh)
"Almada combines reportage, fiction, and autobiography to explore femicide in Argentina in her acute, unflinching latest." ―Publishers Weekly, starred review
"An unassuming yet intensely felt narrative."―The Arts Desk
"Not an easy book, but it feels like an important one – a work of investigative writing about how easily women’s lives are obscured." ―The Scotsman
"Part journalism, part history, part autobiography, part relentless nightmare." ―Shelf Awareness, starred review
"This is a powerful read...[Almada's] effective use of fiction ensures a deep empathy in her readers which strict reportage sometimes fails to evoke." ―The Big Issue
"Almada’s prose is sparse, but the details count. Her ear for dialogue and especially gossip is pitch perfect. Her eye for detail is hawkish." ―LA Review of Books
In this brutal, gripping novel, Selva Almada narrates the case of three small-town teenage girls murdered in the 1980's in the interior of Argentina.Three deaths without culprits: 19-year old Andrea Danne, stabbed in her own bed; 15-year old María Luisa Quevedo, raped, strangled, and dumped in wasteland; and 20-year old Sarita Mundín, whose disfigured body was found on a river bank. Almada takes these and other tales of abused women to weave together a dry, straightforward portrait of gender violence that surpasses national borders and speaks to readers' consciousness all over the world. Following the success of The Wind That Lays Waste, internationally acclaimed Argentinian author Selva Almada dives into the heart of this problem with a reported novel, comparable to Truman Capote's In Cold Blood or John Hersey's Hiroshima, in response to the urgent need for attention to the ongoing catastrophe that is femicide. Not a police chronicle, not a thriller, but a contemporary noir novel that lives in the hearts of these women and the men who have abused them. Almada captures the invisible, and with lyrical brutality, blazes a new trail in journalistic fiction.
Compared to Carson McCullers, William Faulkner, Flannery O’Connor, Sara Gallardo and Juan Carlos Onetti, Selva Almada (Entre Ríos, Argentina, 1973) is considered one of the most powerful voices of contemporary Argentinian and Latin American literature and one of the most influential feminist intellectuals of the region. Including her debut The Wind that Lays Waste, she has published two novels, a book of short stories, a book of journalistic fiction and a kind of film diary (written in the set of Lucrecia Martel’s most recent film Zama, based on Antonio di Benedetto’s novel). She has been finalist of the Rodolfo Walsh Award and of the Tigre Juan Award (both in Spain). Her work has been translated into French, Italian, Portuguese, German, Dutch, Swedish and Turkish. This is her second book to appear in English after The Wind that Lays Waste (Winner of the EIBF First Book Award 2019).
Search 50 Watts Books for Charco Press titles