About Love and Manuel Vilas
Spain's Manuel Vilas, author of the bestseller 'Ordesa,' won the Premio Nadal, awarded by Planeta.
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In 2018, Spanish writer Manuel Vilas published Ordesa, a novel featuring an autobiographical character, where the author paints an intimate and heartbreaking portrait of the deep Spain over the last decades based on his personal and family history. The novel became a bestseller and it was published in English under the same title in 2020.
Five years after Ordesa was published, Vilas has been awarded the Premio Nadal, a 30,000-euro prize awarded by Planeta, for Nosotros, his ninth novel, a story about love, memory and loss.
The novel, which will go on sale on Feb. 1, stars Irene, a 50-year-old woman who believes she has had the happiest marriage in the world.
"With the loss of her husband, Marcelo, her world shatters. She then embarks on a journey along the country's Mediterranean coast where she will discover an unusual way of continuing to live with him in order to move forward," explained the author during the awards ceremony.
The title of the novel, Nosotros, is inspired by "a wonderful bolero sung by Los Panchos and written by the Cuban composer Pedro Junco, and when I listened to it I thought who could be the protagonists of those melodramatic, nostalgic and extraordinarily melancholic stories narrated in boleros," added Vilas.
According to the author, "Nosostros is the melodrama of a passionate and rebellious woman (...) who has lost the one she loved, but who does not admit having lost him."
Trapped in this contradiction, Irene undertakes a challenge "against nature, against time, against death" to revive her relationship with her husband "through a love ritual."
Her mission will be to describe "the enormous difficulty that all human beings have, to build the us. How one goes from the I to the we," said Vilas, who already addressed the theme of love in his two previous novels, La alegría (2019), finalist for the Planeta prize and translated into several languages, and Los besos (2021).
With a degree in Hispanic Philology from the University of Zaragoza, Vilas is one of the most established Spanish authors and poets of the moment. His first novel was España (2008). He is the author of the novel-biography Lou Reed was Spanish (2016) and the travel book, America (2017) written during his stay in Iowa where he is a professor of literature. He is a regular contributor for El País.