Snippet: Orejudo’s “The Famous Five and I”

Antonio Orejudo, Los cinco y yo [The Famous Five and I], 2017, 256 p.

publisher’s summary:

Toni feels that he is a writer who doesn’t write and a professor who doesn’t teach. He grew up reading the adventures of The Famous Five written by Enid Blyton,  books that gave to him that which the Spain of the years before and immediately after Franco’s death was unable to offer to him: entertainment without vigilance, freedom of movement and ginger ale, i.e. the limitless world that the vital intensity of his transition to adolescence needed. In the course of this novel, those personalities that Toni envied so much as a child seem to transform themselves into beings of flesh and bone like himself, who suffers the process in reverse and ends up being what he always wanted to be, one more of them. Los Cinco y yo is a ravishingly original novel that sometimes masks itself as childhood memories, and at others as a disquieting fiction of denunciation, to pass from anecdote to satire and from there to a personal theory of narration.  Antonio Orejudo pays tribute to and at the same time settles accounts with his generation, the one born during the demographic boom of the 1960s, that had nothing to do with the transition from dictatorship to democracy.

Antonio Orejudo (Madrid, 1963) has a PhD in Spanish philology and has been a professor of Spanish literature at American and Spanish universities.

This blogger probably read all of Enid Blyton‘s 21 books of the series in his 1970s childhood but doesn’t remember any of it…

SOURCE: Tusquets (Planeta, publisher)

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