Jo confesso (Confessions), the novel by the Catalan author Jaume Cabré, is a bestseller and has been translated into more than 28 languages. He has now received the 2017 Athens Prize for Literature for the best work of fiction translated into Greek, which adds to his long list of accolades. The book was translated by Evryviadis Wisconsin and published by Polis Publishers in 2016.
First published in 2011, Cabré’s novel has become well-established in the European market, with editions in Albanian, Danish, Dutch, French, German, Greek, Polish, Turkish and English, among other languages. It has also earned him several awards, such as the 2013 Prix Courrier International in France for the best foreign novel and the 2012 Premi de la Crítica Serra d’Or in Catalonia.
Jo confesso (Confessions) is about the research conducted by Adrià Ardèvol, a young man who uncovers the hidden story behind one of his father’s treasured possessions: a 17th-century violin. Around that narrative thread, the author constructs a story that ties in with the dramatic history of Europe in the 20th century.
Jaume Cabré (Barcelona, 1947) shot to international literary fame with Les veus del Pamano (Voices from the Pamano, Proa, 2004), a novel that made his popularity soar: he has sold 450,000 copies in Germany alone. Other novels such as Fra Junoy o l’agonia dels sons (Fra Junoy or the agony of sounds), Senyoria (Honour) and L’ombra de l’eunuc (The eunuch’s shadow) have also earned him considerable recognition. Nevertheless, it was with Jo confesso (Confessions) that Cabré joined the ranks of the contemporary literary greats and became the most internationally renowned writer in the Catalan language, and that is what earned him the 2013 Premi Ciutat de Barcelona award.
Also worth highlighting are his collection of short stories Viatge d’hivern (Winter Journey); the play Pluja seca (Dry rain); the books of essays El sentit de la ficció (The meaning of fiction), La matèria de l’esperit (The matter of the spirit) and Les incerteses (The uncertainties); and his latest book of short stories Quan arriba la penombra (When twilight comes).
The translation into Greek reached its sixth edition in September last year with a print run of 10,321 copies and has very quickly become a bestseller
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