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Kingdom Cons Paperback – 8 June 2017
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Mesmerising & stunningly crafted, 5 stars! Rebecca Choudhury, Waterstones Birmingham
Razor sharp and inimitable - crafted in a way that resembles fable - Kingdom Cons is set in the wake of chaos around the border: the border between two particular countries, yes, but also between worlds, between possibilities, and between ways of seeing. John Ganiard, Literati Bookstore, Ann Arbor MI
Yuri Herrera is a master of the literary arts. His ability to capture the mind's eye and weave an indelible image and story is uncanny. This, his third novel, might be his best yet. In Kingdom Cons, Herrera delivers a stunning example of how art can dissolve boundaries and speak truth to power. Matt Keliher, Subtext Books, St Paul, MN
Kingdom Cons is revelatory. I think Yuri Herrera has created his own genre. The mix of high and low culture, the argot of the streets with the poetic narrative - it's something else. Mexico as a hallucination. Mark Haber, Brazos Bookstore, Houston, TX
My favorite of the new Mexican writers. John Powers, NPR Fresh Air
Short, suspenseful . . . outlandish and heartbreaking. John Williams, New York Times
Herrera packs his slim book with the sex, booze and nihilism of a better Simenon novella. Sam Sacks, Wall Street Journal
The Transmigration of Bodies takes the conventions of gumshoe fiction and transfers them to a charnel-house world that makes nonsense of the genre's habitual moral opposites. Bookforum
Herrera's metaphors grasp the freedom, and the alarming disorientation, of transition and translation. Maya Jaggi, The Guardian
Yuri Herrera's tiny, beautiful novels each conjure myth and metaphor from a contemporary experience in a precise location, transformed by archaic-colloquial prose. Lorna Scott-Fox, Times Literary Supplement
Playful, prophetic, unnerving books that deserve to be read several times. Eileen Battersby, Irish Times
Darkly satisfying. James Lasdun, The Guardian
Yuri Herrera combines a dreamlike setting with vigorous style. Anthony Cummins, Times Literary Supplement
About the Author
Lisa Dillman: Lisa Dillman is a US translator based in Atlanta, Georgia, where she translates Spanish, Catalan and Latin American writers and teaches in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at Emory University. She won the 2016 Best Translated Book Award for Signs Preceding the End of the World.
- Publisher : And Other Stories (8 June 2017)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 112 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1908276924
- ISBN-13 : 978-1908276926
- Dimensions : 12.7 x 1.02 x 19.56 cm
- Best Sellers Rank: 159,103 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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He uses an unusual device of giving every character a title, such as The Jeweler, the Artist, the Journalist, instead of the more conventional device of a name. I guess there's a point about how the economy and society in Mexico are tied to the drug lords but it but it makes reading a little stilted in some places.
The word "cons" in the title is misleading. There aren't any "cons" in the customary sense of a con game played on an unsuspecting victim. The title in Spanish is "Trabajos Del Reino" which means to me Jobs in the Kingdom -which makes sense given the use of titles, rather than names, for characters. Or more poetically "Labors of the Kingdom" but I think neither of those would convey the notion that it's a suspense novel.
Speaking of translation, I thought it was very good, as there's a good deal of narco and other slang in the original that was beyond my comprehension.