The late Gabriel Garcia Marquez left an unpublished novel featuring themes not dissimilar to his most-loved works, it has been revealed. The Colombian writer and winner of the Nobel Prize for literature died on the 17th of April. He stopped writing in 2004, and the unpublished manuscript, En Agosto Nos Vemos ("We'll See Each Other in August"), was completed around that time.
Garcia Marquez biographer, Gerald Martin, says the new work isn't wholly unexpected, but has changed quite a bit since he was made aware of it:
"The last time I talked to Gabo about this story it was a stand-alone which he was going to include in a book with three similar but independent stories. Now they're talking about a series of episodes in which the woman turns up and has a different adventure each year."
It really does seems the writer was busier in his final writing years than most had thought, shaping We'll See Each Other in August into a fuller body of work - and one which ponders the themes of secret lives, love and eroticism which Garcia Marquez' so masterfully handled.
It would of course be wonderful to have another of the writer's works available, but whether we'll get to see the novel in print is currently undecided.
The decision to not publish it was made by Garcia Marquez himself, and any decision to make it available would now be one for the writer's family. Speaking to the Huffington Post, Cristobal Pera of Penguin Random House Mexico's said such a decision was yet to be made.
For now then, we only have an excerpt from the manuscript - printed in Spain's La Vanguardia newspaper.
It introduces us to a woman in her 50s. The lady makes annual visits to her mother's grave on a tropical island where, each year she has adventures. In the excerpt, which may be the first chapter, the lady has an affair with a man of similar age at the hotel in which she is staying.
Unfortunately, the chapter is only published in Spanish (found here). Non-Spanish speakers might get a functional sense of the story with in-browser translation. But who wants functional? We'd rather (hopefully) wait for an full English language version.