The Linden Tree (Paperback)

The Linden Tree By César Aira, Chris Andrews (Translated by) Cover Image
By César Aira, Chris Andrews (Translated by)
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Description


A delightful fictional account of the small town César Aira grew up in—not so long ago


A delightful fictional memoir about César Aira's small hometown. The narrator, born the same year and now living in the same great city (Buenos Aires) as César Aira, could be the author himself. Beginning with his parents—an enigmatic handsome black father who gathered linden flowers for his sleep-inducing tea and an irrational, crippled mother of European descent—the narrator catalogs memories of his childhood: his friends, his peculiar first job, his many gossiping neighbors, and the landscape and architecture of the provinces. The Linden Tree beautifully brings back to life that period in Argentina when the poor, under the guiding hand of Eva Perón, aspired to a newly created middle class.


As it moves from anecdote to anecdote, this charming short novella—touching, funny, and sometimes surreal—invites the reader to visit the source of Aira's extraordinary imagination. 



About the Author


CÉSAR AIRA was born in Coronel Pringles, Argentina in 1949, and has lived in Buenos Aires since 1967. He taught at the University of Buenos Aires (about Copi and Rimbaud) and at the University of Rosario (Constructivism and Mallarmé), and has translated and edited books from France, England, Italy, Brazil, Spain, Mexico, and Venezuela. Perhaps one of the most prolific writers in Argentina, and certainly one of the most talked about in Latin America, Aira has published more than 100 books to date in Argentina, Mexico, Colombia, Venezuela, Chile, and Spain, which have been translated for France, Great Britain, Italy, Brazil, Portugal, Greece, Austria, Romania, Russia, and the United States. One novel, La prueba, has been made into a feature film, and How I Became a Nun was chosen as one of Argentina’s ten best books. Besides essays and novels Aira writes regularly for the Spanish newspaper El País. In addition to winning the 2021 Formentor Prize, he has received a Guggenheim scholarship, and was shortlisted for the Rómulo Gallegos prize and the Booker International Prize.

 



Chris Andrews was born in Newcastle, Australia, in 1962. He studied at the University of Melbourne and taught there, in the French program, from 1995 to 2008. He also taught at the University of Western Sydney, where he was a member of the Writing and Society Research Center. As well as translating nine books by Roberto Bolano and ten books (and counting) by César Aira, he also brought the French author Kaouther Adimi’s Our Riches into English for New Directions. Andrews has won the Valle-Inclán Prize and the French-American Foundation Translation Prize for his translations. Additionally, he has published the critical studies Poetry and Cosmogony: Science in the Writing of Queneau and Ponge and Roberto Bolano's Fiction: An Expanding Universe as well as two collections of poems, Cut Lunch and Lime Green Chair, for which he won the Anthony Hecht Poetry Prize.

Praise For…


Readers already familiar with his strange and exhilarating fiction…will need no persuading to read The Linden Tree. Indeed, the work functions almost as an origin myth for Aira's brilliant oeuvre.

— American Book Review

A gentle semi-autobiographical novel about the author’s childhood in Coronel Pringles, Argentina; the book recalls Peronism and the invention of a provincial middle class, juxtaposing portraits of eccentric neighbours with meditations on how complex social reality is refracted through a child’s eyes.
— Steven Zultanski - Frieze

An ethereal ramble through the sweet haze of nostalgia by the prolific Argentinean writer Aira. When is memory not true? If we can only live our lives in one direction, how can we ever learn from our future? These are the heady ideas Aira seals firmly in a fictional memoir that finds him sauntering through the past of a man nearly exactly like him... A funny, sardonic, and richly emotional journey through one man's interior experience.
— Kirkus

Surreal, witty, and funny.
— The Guardian

South America’s answer to Haruki Murakami.
— Andrew Irvin - The Miami Herald

Argentina's greatest living writer.
— The Nation

Exhilarating. Should not be missed.
— The New York Times

Aira’s work is varied and extensive, but The Linden Tree may be one of its best points of entry, affirming the existence of a Latin American literature that refuses to conform to the conventions and stereotypes of magical realism, social realism or other clichés about fiction from this part of the globe.

— The New York Times

In this novella, which teases readers with suggestions of the autobiographical, Aira has one eye on his country’s past and the social effects of Juan Perón’s regime...Although comprised of what can seem like individually minor creations, Aira’s project is no less ambitious than Proust’s, and for those of his fans who cannot read his work in Spanish, the arrival of each new title is a bittersweet occasion. It has taken 14 years for this book to reach us in English, and that is too long to wait. We want more, and we want it yesterday.
— Patrick Flanery - The Spectator

Hail César!
— Patti Smith - The New York Times Book Review

Once you start reading Aira, you don't want to stop.
— Roberto Bolaño


Product Details
ISBN: 9780811219082
ISBN-10: 0811219089
Publisher: New Directions
Publication Date: April 24th, 2018
Pages: 128
Language: English