The Book of Emma Reyes - translation and introduction by Daniel Alarcon

Tue, 10/03/2017 - 4:44pm -- JGranatino

This memoir – a collection of letters written over a period of thirty years - vividly chronicles the life of Colombian artist Emma Reyes (1919-2003). Growing up in abject poverty and illiteracy in Bogotá, abandoned by her mother, and brought to live in a convent orphanage, she improbably rose from life of cruel deprivation to become a visual artist, mingling with distinguished artists and intellectuals from South America and the Continent. Emma’s dogged will to survive and her incredible personal journey are absorbing; despite her lack of a formal education, her clear memory and perceptiveness, her extraordinary natural ability as a raconteur or anecdotista, reveal her early life in vivid, detailed vignettes. Though the subject matter is often heart-wrenching, her considerable skill as a writer will draw you in and compel you to read on.  

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