The Polish Boxer
Publication Date: October 2012
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The English-language debut of a major Latin American writer.
Eduardo Halfon was born in Guatemala City, moved to the United States with his family at the age of ten, went to school in South Florida, studied Industrial Engineering at North Carolina State University, and then returned to Guatemala to teach literature for eight years at Universidad Francisco Marroquín. Named one of best young Latin American writers by the Hay Festival of Bogotá, he is also the recipient of the prestigious José María de Pereda Prize for the Short Novel. Although bilingual, Halfon chooses to write in Spanish and has published nine books of fiction. In 2011 he received a Guggenheim Fellowship to work on continuing the story of The Polish Boxer, which is inspired by his own family history and is the first of his novels to be published in English. Halfon currently lives in Nebraska and travels frequently to Guatemala.
In consultation with author Eduardo Halfon, The Polish Boxer was translated from the Spanish by an accomplished international team of five: Daniel Hahn, Ollie Brock, Thomas Bunstead, Lisa Dillman, and Anne McLean.
Elegant” Marie Claire
A key pleasure of The Polish Boxer is that of revelation . . . The power of The Polish Boxer is that it is always rooted in the personal. It is deeply accessible, deeply moving.” Los Angeles Times
These are the stories of life . . . the question of survival (of both people and cultures) and the way the fictional makes the real bearable and intelligible.” Publishers Weekly (boxed review)
Halfon passionately and lyrically illustrates the significance of the journey and the beauty of true mystery. The Polish Boxer is sublime and arresting, and will linger with readers who will be sure to revisit it again and again.” Booklist (starred review)
Brilliant . . . opens with one of the best classroom scenes I’ve ever read.” Shelf Awareness
Eduardo Halfon is a brilliant storyteller, whose gifts are displayed on every page of this beautiful, daring, and deeply humane book.” DANIEL ALARCÓN, author of War by Candlelight and Lost City Radio
”Eduardo Halfon’s prose is delicate, precise, and as ineffable as precocious arta lighthouse that illuminates everything.” FRANCISCO GOLDMAN, author of Say Her Name
The Polish Boxer is an enchanting, unclassifiable book of encounters, impressions, and improvisations: a book for the ages, which can be read in one sitting, and then again, and again, and again.” CHRISTOPHER MERRILL, director of the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa and author of The Tree of the Doves: Ceremony, Expedition, War
It is not often that one encounters such a mix of personal engagement and literary passion, or pain and tenderness.” ANDRÉS NEUMAN, author of Traveler of the Century
Eduardo Halfon belongs to a new generation of Latin American writers who, from the beginning, demonstrate an impeccable mastery of their craft, without any hesitation in the use of language.” SERGIO RAMÍREZ, former Vice President of Nicaragua and author of Margarita, How Beautiful the Sea