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THE HISTORY OF SILENCE by Pedro Zarraluki

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A work that reflects on the beauty and the risk of silence, on small unmentionable secrets and betrayals that lurk behind every love.

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“I had just come back from the supermarket and I emptied the shopping bags out on the kitchen table. Irene was already boiling water for the pasta in a pan. Then I gave her a heartbroken look before announcing that I had forgotten the spaghetti. From that moment on, in our private language I’ve forgotten the spaghetti came to mean giving up on something out of a sense of overwhelming fatigue. And so, when Irene once managed to go four days without smoking, she said I’ve forgotten the spaghetti and lit a cigarette. And I said it while lying in bed, the moment I woke up, the day I decided to abandon my stubborn efforts to go the gym every morning . . . Since that fateful day we regretted a hundred times over having forgotten the spaghetti, which leads me to believe that we spend our lives giving up on things, primarily those we are able to get only by our own efforts.”

The History of Silence—winner of the prestigious Premio Herralde de Novela on its original publication in Spanish—is a novel with a splendid gallery of characters in which the author displays his implacable sense of humor and shows us to what extent life is a comedy under the constant threat of a tragic ending.

Pedro Zarraluki published his first book, La décima sinfonía (The Tenth Symphony), when he was just twenty years old, and has devoted himself to writing ever since. He has written two collections of short stories, Galería de enormidades (Gallery of the Outrageous) and Retrato de familia con catástrofe (Family Portrait with Catastrophe). As a novelist, he has published El responsable de las ranas (In Charge of Frogs), which received the Ciudad de Barcelona Prize and the Ojo Crítico Prize, La historia del silencio (The Story of Silence), awarded the Premio Herralde de Novela, Hotel Astoria (Hotel Astoria) and Para amantes y ladrones (For Thieves and Lovers). Un encargo difícil (A Difficult Assignment), was given the Nadal Award and was shortlisted for the José Manuel Lara Foundation Award for book of the year. Following the short story compilation Humor pródigo (Lavish Humour) in 2007, came his latest book, Todo eso que tanto nos gusta (All That We So Enjoy). His latest work is the collection of stories Te espero dentro (I'll Wait for You Inside).


  • Publisher Hispabooks
  • Product Dimensions 14 x 21.6 cm.
  • Pages 190
  • Language English
  • ISBN 9788494283062
  • Binding Paperback
  • Age Adults
  • Translated by Nick Caistor & Lorenza García
From Title Comment
07/18/2017 Thomas McFarlane. Enjoyable read! First book that I have read from this author and I loved it!