Leonardo Padura Biography
Leonardo Padura was born in 1955 in Havana and lives in Cuba. He has published a number of short-story collections and literary essays but international fame came with the Havana Quartet, all featuring Inspector Mario Conde.
Like many others of his generation, Padura had faced the question of leaving Cuba, particularly in the late 80s and early 90s, when living conditions deteriorated sharply as Russian aid evaporated. He chose to stay. And to write beautiful ironic novels in which Soviet-style socialism is condemned by implication through scenes of Havana life where even the police are savagely policed.
The crime novels feed on the noises and smells of Havana, on the ability of its inhabitants to keep joking, to make love and music, to drink rum, and to survive through petty crime such as running clandestine bars and restaurants.
The Inspector Mario Conde Series to Date
- Pasado perfecto (1991). Havana Blue (2007)
- Vientos de cuaresma (1994). Havana Gold (2008)
- Mascaras (1997). Havana Red (2005)
- Paisaje de otoño (1998). Havana Black (2006)
- La Neblina de Ayer. Havana Fever (2009)
- Adiós Hemingway (2005, novella); published with same title in English in 2006 - the first of his books to be translated into English.
- La cola de la serpiente (not yet available in English)
The Inspector Mario Conde books are translated from Spanish into English by
Peter Bush, well known for his extensive work on Juan Goytisolo. He has also completed translations of Daniel Chavarria, Nuria Amat and Pedro de Alarcón.
This biography was last updated on 05/06/2009.
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