Mudar de piel

Shedding Skin | Anagrama, 2018

Picture this: nine narrators gathered together to tell one story each, no-holds-barred, of a key episode from their lives. Tales of childhood shared with parents and siblings, or tales from the recent past, with partners and offspring.

Much as the storytellers in this hypothetical scenario would find themselves adopting a similar tone thanks to the subject matter or backdrop, the nine stories assembled in this book draw on a common language to weave a highly unorthodox tapestry of what lies beneath the affections. While some are conventional stories, other straddle the borders of genre to emerge as veritable bonsai novels, yet all nine tales, bound by the subtlest of echoes, contain within them the desire to strip reality to its bare bones to reveal it just as it might appear in a brief flash of insight.

With the incisiveness and keenness of vision that are the hallmarks of his work, Marcos Giralt Torrente once again delves deep into family relations, displaying a tremendous knack for portraying the (occasionally contradictory) inner worlds of characters brought face to face with their fears and desires. Feckless fathers, flighty mothers, adolescents taking their first faltering steps in the adult world, complicit children, siblings bound by ties that are hard to break, ominous shadows, irreparable absences, flawed loves and, in general, the slowly emerging jigsaw of life’s complexities to which we are exposed when living side by side with our nearest and dearest.

Free from melodrama yet unflinching, with a detached and yet compassionate gaze, at all times accompanied by a virtuoso prose style and a keen eye for shifting tones and nuance, the author explores the inner workings of intimacy and the cracks it revels to offer nine outstanding stories.