PRH-Caballo de Troya, 2020 | Lithium


Argentina/Concreto; Spain/PRH-Caballo de Troya


“This young writer is shattering classical forms and narrative modes in what is at once a genre novel and a generational novel about rivalries and awakenings.” Lola Sasturain, Página 12

“Moving and stimulating, Lithium is yet another star in that unique constellation of Malén Denis’s work, unlike any other in contemporary literature. Always challenging received commonplaces, the novel discomfits you at the same time as it forces you to take sides, to take a clear position, at least to declare your feelings.” Gustavo Yuste, La Primera Piedra

“The entire novel is suffused with poetic language. Lithium has little cause-and-effect to structure it, and instead an abundance of internal images, snippets, shifting evocations. Metaphor is not a resource, but the hard core of the book, which examines the unutterable, the silenced, and the mysterious ways it bursts forth.” Manuel Allasino, La Tinta


Lithium is a novel about the experience of migration, of precariousness, of a hyper-medicated millennial generation searching for a happiness no one can find.

“I’m not pregnant. I got shaken by the sight of my own blood, I didn’t have anyone to turn to. Who could I go to and say I used to be pregnant and I’m not anymore? Would my mother have helped me understand my body? Would my mother have cranked up suddenly like a motor if she found out she might be losing a grandson?”

The voice addressing us here is that of a woman near thirty who is writing almost automatically from a longing to understand all the things that are happening around her: a spontaneous miscarriage, a move, a nasty drug trip, friends who come and go, horoscopes, the mewing of a cat, the enormous, shining eyes of Sailor Moon…

Lithium, the first novel by poet and journalist Malén Denis––which Marina Mariasch describes as a “permanent tension between mind and heart… full of hidden secrets”––is in reality a gathering of instants that takes us straight into the precarious life of Argentina’s youth. A measured, lyrical testimony told from the point of view of a woman who has no other option than to flee, but will not do so until she has whispered her story to us first.