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Leonardo Padura Books In Order

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Publication Order of Mario Conde Books

Havana Blue (1991)Description / Buy at Amazon
Havana Gold (1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
Havana Red (1997)Description / Buy at Amazon
Havana Black (1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
Havana Fever (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
Adios Hemingway (2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
Heretics (2013)Description / Buy at Amazon
Grab a Snake by the Tail (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Transparency of Time (2021)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Man Who Loved Dogs (2009)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Anthologies

Kill the Ámpaya!: The Best Latin American Baseball Fiction(2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
Cuba on the Verge(2017)Description / Buy at Amazon

A Cuban author with a long and impressive legacy behind him, the writer Leonardo de la Caridad Padura Fuentes is an almost an institution in his own right. World renowned for his craft and ability to create intricate and intelligent prose, he’s the best known voice of his country and his generation. A spokesman for his craft he’s been able to build a career that has been lauded throughout the industry by both his peers and contemporaries alike.

Early and Personal Life

Born on the 9th of October in 1955 the author to be Leonardo Padura was born and raised in Havana in the country of Cuba. It was this upbringing that would shape a lot of his writing to follow, as he took in inspiration from his surrounding environment. Using his experiences growing up, he’d use it to build his ideas and opinions, as his writing would reflect the state of his country.

Educated at the University of Havana, he gained a degree in Latin American literature, something which allowed him to shape his style and voice. Using this to give his career the academic foundations that he required, he would hone and refine his voice over the years to come. Constantly working on his writing as well, he would continue to work at shaping his writing career, along with his many themes and ideas.

Previously working as a journalist prior to becoming a full-time writer, Padura initially worked for a magazine titled ‘Caiman Barbudo’. Later he would go on to become an essayist as well, along with writing a number of well received screenplays too. This would allow him to fall into writing as a fully fledged novelist, something which let him make an impressive impact on his initial debut on the literary scene.

Still writing to this very day, he has a lot more to come yet, as he is currently releasing a number of stand-alone titles now. Currently living in Cuba he continues to write a lot about his home country, with a variety of different ideas being worked upon through his novels. With a lot more planned on the horizon it appears that he’s not stopping anytime soon, as his writing career grows from strength-to-strength.

Writing Career

Creating his first novel between the years of 1983 and 1984, he released his first short-novel ‘Fiebre de caballos’ or ‘Horse Fever’. His first full novel, though, was to be the first in the ‘Mario Conde’ series of novels, which was first brought out in 1991. This marked his initial début onto the scene making an impact on the reading public at large, garnering critical acclaim worldwide.

Setting up his most famous series of novels to date, his Mario Conde set of novels are perhaps his best known titles. Following the eponymous Inspector Mario Conde and his various investigations, they delve deep into the heart of Cuban society. Set in Havana they really get a feel for the turmoil that the country has faced in its past and where it is headed in the future.

Winning a number of awards throughout his writing career, Padura has gone on to be lauded by both his peers and contemporaries alike. Getting many great reviews, he’s appreciated not only critically, but commercially as well, as he’s gone on to gain best-seller status. With his work being translated into a variety of different languages he’s not just appreciated in his own country, but on a worldwide scale as well.

Highly vocal about his craft as well, he’s outspoken on his his life and work as well, leading another generation of up-and-coming writers into the literary industry. Taking on grand ideas and major themes, his work follows in the tradition of the rich and varied Cuban writers out there. Knowing who he is as a writer and where he comes from, he’s a strong and confident writer with a lot to say for himself.

Continuing to write to this present day, there’s a lot more to come from Leonardo Padura as an author yet. Knowing his audience and his readership extremely well now, he is an author who is clearly currently in his element. Showing a lot of potential to keep growing as a writer as well, this is something that will continue on into the foreseeable future for some time yet.

Havana Red

Setting up the third title in the ongoing Mario Conde series, this continues the ongoing and much loved franchise. Initially brought out in 1997 it was first brought out through the ‘Bitter Lemon Press’ publishing label to much acclaim. Carrying on in much the same vein as the first three it provides the readers with more of what they’re looking for.

Starring Inspector Mario Conde it sees him investigating a transvestite who has been found strangled to death in Havana park. Wearing an extremely beautiful red dress the victim marks only the beginning of a dark and tumultuous journey into the heart of a corrupt underworld. Set amongst men and women who underwent the revolution, it sees their dreams of seeking their own identity and facing exile. Will Conde find the culprit? What lies at the heart of this corrupt society? Can he discover the secret of the Havana red?

The Man Who Loved Dogs

Originally published in 2009 on the 6th of January through the ‘Farrar, Straus and Giroux’ publishing house, this was a stand-alone title from Padura. Offering his now loyal fans a lot of what they’ve now come to expect from the exemplary author, it provides many of his ideas on Cuba. Marking his departure from the Mario Conde series, it’s ideal for any fans of the writer looking to delve further into his career and mindset

Setting its narrative around Ivan Cardenas Maturell it sees him as the literary hero of his country until he is regarded as counter-revolutionary after one of his pieces. Fallen at the wayside, he is later found to be working as a proofreader for a veterinary magazine, as he is a shadow of his former self. It is then that he comes into contact with a mysterious foreigner with his two Russian wolfhounds, as he’s taken on an adventure that draws upon the assassination of Leon Trotsky as committed by Ramon Mercader. Will Ivan ever return to his former glory? Where will his journey take him? What is the secret behind the man who loved dogs?

Book Series In Order » Authors » Leonardo Padura

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