Three Argentinean female writers you can't miss
From the lady of terror, Mariana Enriquez, to the undefineable, Samanta Schweblin, the literature of the southern cone is much more than Borges and is led by women.
I read Distancia de Rescate (2014) between confusion and being spellbound, letting myself be carried away by descriptions like paintings of barren fields and the intriguing voice of someone whom you don't know until the end, and who challenges the protagonist. It's a novel difficult to classify like the alot of Schweblin's science-fiction work, but made of even darker material — of life itself. There's also Kentukis (2018), which is an apocalyptic and anachronistic story about small domestic robots and the voyeurs and exhibitionists that pilot them.
Nominated for the Man Booker in 2017 and winner of the Casa de las Americas Award, the Juan Rulfo, and the Shirley Jackson Award, Samanta Schweblin is undoubtedly one of the key voices in Argentine narrative today. Although she lives in Berlin, that gives her writing some nuances that impose each foot in a different continent.
Her latest novel, Nuestra parte en la noche (2019), has consecrated Enríquez, although she is not very fond of "consecrations," as one of the authors who best handles the horror genre and also claims it. That's especially when considering the war between the genres traditionally considered 'niches,' such as fantasy, science fiction and terror, is being won by the latter.
Enríquez has Stephen King's ability to turn an everyday environment anchored in her native Argentina to a place where everything is possible, even the magic and witches who make sacrifices exist, or enchanted houses and urban legends like the ones she introduces us to in superb storybooks like Los peligros de fumar en la cama (2009) and Las cosas que perdimos en el fuego (2016).
The writing of this Argentinian author living in France is a machine gun that shoots the right words; the ones that make your bones hurt, that transmute you, and confronts you with some of the greatest social taboos. The themes include the relationship between mother and children, pederasty, and love that ends up turning you into an undesirable and crazy being.
With a musical pulse and a lyricism made in Harwicz, works such as Die, My Love, nominated for the Man Booker in 2018, Feebleminded (2014), Precoz (2015) or Degenerado (2019) are a triumph for radical literature while its creator reflects on language that she twists to the delight of her readers.