A manual for Manuel by Julio Cortazar ; translated from the Spanish by Gregory Rabassa.
New York : Pantheon Books, 1978. First American edition, stated. Hardcover. 391 pages ; 22 cm. $10.95 dust jacket, with a few rips and tear to dust jacket spine top and corner edges. Firm, square copy without markings to pages.
In his first political novel, Julio Cortazar, the internationally acclaimed Argentinian author, applies his special mindscape to today's headlines as he tackles the surreal world of Latin American exiles in Paris who are intent on committing revolutionary acts. Using smuggled counterfeit money, they finance a plan to kidnap a top Latin American police official, whose headquarters are in Paris, and hold him for ransom until certain political prisoners in Latin America are released.
Amidst pages interspersed with newspaper clippings of jailbreaks, police attacks, torture, and various acts of rebellion, the world of Cortazar's sometimes wildly im-probable intellectuals-on-the-run blossoms. His characters are all searching for an almost mystical "bridge" to a revolutionary new world; but the bridge proves elusive, the revolution far away. Only Manuel, a baby for whom this manual of clippings and thoughts is being compiled, may live to see its arrival.
Julio Cortazar, who lives and works in France, has long been recognized as one of the outstanding Latin American writers of our day. Pantheon has published six of his hooks in English: The Winners (1965), Hopscotch (1966), End of the Game (1967), Cronopios and Fatnas (1969), 62: A Model Kit (1972), and All Fires the Fire (1973).
The Times Literam Supplement has hailed A Manual for Manuel as a "liberating book [which] presents a heroic notion of revolution difficult to realize..There will be room in it for Andy Warhol, aleatory music, Rimbaud, Joni Mitchell, and magic." WINNER OF THE PRIX MEDICIS
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