Enrique VILA-MATAS

Mac y su contratiempo

Seix Barral, 2017

Translations

(Arabic / Al Mada), (Brazil / Companhia das Letras); (France / Bourgois); (Greece / Ikaros); (Italy / Feltrinelli); (Portugal / Teodolito); (Romania / Vellant); (Turkey / Jaguar); (UK & Australia / Harvill); (US / New Directions)

Press

«The work of Vila-Matas is largely conceptual and can create addiction. His reputation as a cult author grows with each new book.» Valerie Miles, The New York Times

«A brilliant work that leaves you breathless [...] A genuine "research" on the process of literary creation. A homage to the complexity, the struggles and the exaltation of the work of writers.»
Guillaume Le Douarin, L’Écume des Pages

«As per usual, a novel with literature as the main character.» Mathieu Lindon, Libération

«If there is an author today who loves to play with literary games and impostures, that is Enrique Vila-Matas. He never forgets that a theoretical idea is by no means irreconcilable with playful pleasure.» L´Express

«A masterpiece in the literary puzzle that Vila-Matas weaves endlessly.»
Kerenn Elkaïm, Le Soir

«This original novel is fully-rounded and delightful, written with a great deal of humour, but above all as it is intelligent, not something you come across every day. I enjoyed it enormously.» Eduardo Mendoza

«There are few authors who provoke such unanimous praise for excellence as Enrique Vila-Matas, master of literature and metaliterature. His latest novel is magnificent, complete, one of his best works and one of the clearest tributes I have ever read to the creativity of oral story-telling and writing (…) One of our most original writers is here to tell us that originality, - not being repetitive- is not in itself a literary quality.» J.M. Pozuelo Yvancos, ABC Cultural

«A powerful story about how to create fiction with one's own fiction and a love letter to literature.» Inés Martín Rodrigo, ABC

«Its pages reveal a profound, fundamental lyricism, a style that finds its own voice and a phrasing that is one-of-a-kind, the simple and the complex, the secret, overlooked story that lies beneath the main plotline …» Ana Rodríguez Fischer, El País

«For those who have never read his works and want to enter his world and for his many fans, everyone will find that Vila-Matas is in top form. A carousel of literary emotions.» Carles Geli, El País

«A modern novel, written with a surprising and playful style that confirms Vila-Matas as an author who can still claim to be a beginner and an adventurer, that is, that he keeps experimenting and obtaining valuable variations.»
Nadal Suau, El Mundo

«A hilarious literary turn of the screw beyond metaliterature. Pure Vila-Matas.»
Matías Néspolo, El Mundo

«One of his most complex works on the subject of literary creation and his own writing. Another great novel by Vila-Matas, full of humor, surprises and quests.» J.A. Masoliver Ródenas, La Vanguardia

Synopsis

(Mac's Problem) A masterful novel that can be read on several levels, with twists and turns and truly inspired flights of fancy.

Newly jobless, Mac takes his daily stroll through El Coyote, the Barcelona neighbourhood he calls home. He is obsessed with his neighbour, a famous, acclaimed author, and is put out each time the man snubs him. One day he overhears his neighbour chatting with a bookseller about his first novel Walter and His Setback, a youthful work filled with jarring passages, of which he has a vague recollection , and . Mac, who is toying with the idea of putting pen to paper, takes it upon himself to rewrite and improve on this fictional debut, one his neighbour would prefer to consign to the vaults.