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Samanta Schweblin Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Fever Dream (2014)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Little Eyes (2018)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Short Stories/Novellas

Birds in the Mouth (2010)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Collections

Mouthful of Birds (2010)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Samanta Schweblin is an Argentinian literary fiction author best known for her debut novel “Fever Dream.” Schweblin grew up in a Buenos Aires suburb from where she started her writing career though she has been living in Berlin since 2012. For her critically acclaimed works, she has been celebrated as her generation’s most innovative Spanish author even though her debut came nearly two decades ago. After enjoying much success in Argentina and other parts of the world, her novels are now printed in more than 35 languages across the globe. However, it is only recently that her novels and short story collections came into the radar of English readers in the United States. The introduction to the author was when her novel “Fever Dream” was translated into English in 2017. “Fever Dream” her debut would later make the shortlist for the 2017 Man Booker International Prize. In 2019, her second novel “Kentukis” that was translated into English as “Little Eyes” made the Longlist for the Man Booker International Prize. With critically acclaimed and award-winning works published, Schweblin has cemented her reputation as one of the rare authors that are exceptional in writing in both the novel and short fiction formats. In between appearing in South America and Reykjavik, she has been speaking about how to write, reading Kafka in German, and talking about her literary inspirations.

Samanta has always been interested in writing and reading ever since she was a child. At the age of twelve, her favorite authors were Ray Bradbury of “October Country” and short story collections by Franz Kafka and Julio Cortazar. These have had a significant influence on her writings as the intensity, surrealism, and violence of their works can be found in her works. Other influences while she was living in Argentina included the likes of Tobias Wolff, Raymond Carver, and Flannery O’Connor. She has said that her enthusiasm and curiosity about writing were fueled by members of her family most of whom also loved books. Samanta remembers her grandfather reading Latin American poetry and getting emotional and she wanted to experience that. She would later on become immersed in the wide networks of writing workshops from the age of 16. It is a common thing in Argentina for groups of seven or even ten writers to congregate and learn how to write by critiquing each other’s works. Samanta joined several of these groups and asserted that they also played a huge role in providing encouragement and confidence on her journey. She would spend hours after her workshops buying books after her workshops, which she used to build her own library in Buenos Aires. It was during this time that she met renowned writers such as Ines Garland, Guillermo Martinez, and Pablo Ramos. She also honed her skills as her work was seen by publishing professionals. It was not long before she got her agent Gloria Gutierrez and in 2002 published “The Core of Disturbance” in 2002. She would later move to Berlin and with so much free time on her hands, she decided to venture into novel writing by penning “Fever Dream.”

Samanta Schweiblin made her name long before she had her novels translated into English. She had her work translated into more than 20 languages. Her collections such as “Siete Casas Vacias” and “Fever Dream” had been critically acclaimed in her homeland of Argentina and across the Spanish world long before an English audience started appreciating her work. She had been approached long before to have her novels translated into English but had been cautious about accepting them. She had seen many renowned Latin Authors have their works get lost when they translated with small publishers and she did not want that for her novels. She had vowed that if her novels were to be published, they had to become blockbusters and she knew she had only one chance to do it. Her anxiety about being taken out of context, misinterpreted, and misunderstood is understandable given that she is an author who showcases full control in the handling of her prose. She writes in an economical language that is very effective at creating a claustrophobic and tense atmosphere in her prose.

Samanta Schweblin’s debut novel “Fever Dream” opens to Amanda lying in the hospital. A boy named David is asking her some questions with some urgency. She is recounting things or telling a story of what happened to her while the boy tries to find a critical element in her story. Soon a narrative of bizarre worms emerges as Amanda tells her story. A few days past, she had met Carla the boy’s mother while she was vacationing. Carla believes there is something wrong with her son and she, in turn, narrates a story to Amanda. As a three-year-old, David had been poisoned after he drank from a stream that had been contaminated. She had taken her son to a local woman that had taken his soul from him and put it into another body so that he could continue living. Since that time, another spirit has inhabited his body. What happens to Nina and Amanda after this result in the hospitalization of Amanda. David also demands that they tell him the exact timeline of events. While several aspects of the story seem to be critical for Amanda, David sees uninterested in anything he believes is not important.

“Little Eyes” by Samanta Schweblin is a dystopian narrative of the Kentukis. They are small electronic-like animals that come with long-distance control options and a camera. With such equipment, they can be controlled so that they roll around and communicate with their controllers. Thousands of cases have been reported of the Kentukis that have invaded Oaxaca, Vancouver, Barcelona, Tel Aviv, and Hong King and it has been reported that they will soon be in all corners of the globe. They are something akin to smart devices that are spying on the people in the spaces in which they have invaded. Their controllers are real persons who live in all parts of the world and using the electronic animals they can enter into the living rooms of Bangkok or Sydney and spy on another person’s activities. While there is a lot of information about them and people are wary, the Kentukis are completely anonymous which makes detection almost impossible.

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