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SPACE INVADERS

Nona Fernández

  • Original Title: SPACE INVADERS
  • Publication date: December 2013
  • Publisher: ALQUIMIA EDICIONES
  • Country: CL
  • 88 print pages
  • Drama

Information

  • Epoch: Historical
  • Time Period: 20th century
  • Location setting: Chile
  • Themes: FAMILY, Childhood, PEOPLE facing life, Coming of age, Looking back on one's life, Search for the truth, Death, Facing failure, SOCIETY DYSFUNCTIONS, Violence, Power, Totalitarian regime, SOCIAL CHRONICLES, Friendship

Pitch

The story of a group of childhood friends who, in adulthood, are preoccupied by uneasy memories and visions of their classmate Estrella. Soon it becomes clear that Estrella’s father was a ranking government officer implicated in the violent crimes of the Pinochet regime, and the question of what became of her after she left school haunts her friends.

Comments

Longlisted for the National Book Award 2019, in the Translated Literature category

English translation to be published in November 2019.

“A dark and deceptively playful novel about a generation of Chilean kids who try to understand the terrible country they live in.”—Alejandro Zambra

Patricia Paola Fernández Silanes, mostly known as Nona Fernández, is a Chilean actress, writer and screenwriter. Her novel LA DIMENSION DESCONOCIDA (The Twilight Zone) won the 2017 Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz Award.

Summary

SPACE INVADERS is the story of a group of childhood friends who, in adulthood, are preoccupied by uneasy memories and visions of their classmate Estrella González Jepsen. In their dreams, they catch glimpses of Estrella’s braids, hear echoes of her voice, and read old letters that eventually, mysteriously, stopped arriving. They recall regimented school assemblies, nationalistic class performances, and a trip to the beach. Soon it becomes clear that Estrella’s father was a ranking government officer implicated in the violent crimes of the Pinochet regime, and the question of what became of her after she left school haunts her erstwhile friends.

Growing up, these friends - from her pen pal, Maldonado, to her crush, Riquelme - were old enough to sense the danger and tension that surrounded them, but powerless in the face of it. They could control only the stories they told each other and the “ghostly green bullets” they fired in the video game they played obsessively.

One of the leading Latin American writers of her generation, Nona Fernández builds a choral voice and constantly shifting image of young life in the waning years of the dictatorship. In her short but intricately layered novel, she summons the collective memory of a generation, rescuing felt truth from the oblivion of official history.

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