By Marie Arana
(The Dial Press, Hardcover, 9780385336642, 384pp.)
Publication Date: June 27, 2006
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Don Victor Sobrevilla, a lovable, eccentric engineer, always dreamed of founding a paper factory in the heart of the Peruvian rain forest, and at the opening of this miraculous novel his dream has come true—until he discovers the recipe for cellophane. In a life already filled with signs and portents, the family dog suddenly begins to cough strangely. A wild little boy turns azurite blue. All at once Don Victor is overwhelmed by memories of his erotic past; his prim wife, Doña Mariana, reveals the shocking truth about her origins; the three Sobrevilla children turn their love lives upside down; the family priest blurts out a long-held secret....
A hilarious plague of truth has descended on the once well-behaved Sobrevillas, only the beginning of this brilliantly realized, generous-hearted novel. Marie Arana’s style, originality, and trenchant wit will establish her as one of the most audacious talents in fiction today and Cellophane as one of the most evocative and spirited novels of the year.
Marie Arana is the editor of the Washington Post Book World. Born in Peru of a Peruvian father and an American mother, she is the author of American Chica, a finalist for the PEN—Memoir Award and the National Book Award, and a collection of columns, The Writing Life: Writers on How They Think and Work. Marie Arana lives in Washington, D.C., and Lima, Peru.