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Garcia Marquez to release 1st novel in 10 years

'Memories of My Melancholy Whores' will be in Spanish only
/ Source: The Associated Press

Nobel laureate Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s best-selling book, “100 Years of Solitude,” has become required reading for high school students worldwide, but the title of his new work just might scare off a few educators.

The book is “Memoria de Mis Putas Tristes,” and the working translation is “Memories of My Melancholy Whores,” according to publisher Alfred A. Knopf.

The Spanish-language version will be released Oct. 27, Knopf announced Thursday. A total of 1 million copies will be printed in Spanish for markets throughout Latin America, Spain and the United States by various publishing houses. There was no word on when an English-language version would be out.

Moises Melo, editor of the book’s Colombian publisher, Norma de Colombia, said the racy title should not be so shocking these days.

“There was a time when Garcia Marquez’s language seemed crude,” Melo said. “But these days, this seems to be the most normal, the most ingenious part of his writing.”

Garcia Marquez “has written a work of fiction about the love an older man feels,” Melo said, describing the new novel. “It has a melancholic tone that’s very beautiful.”

The new book is Garcia Marquez’s first fiction book in more than a decade. Love has played a large role in many of the author’s books, Melo noted, especially in “Love in the Time of Cholera.” Garcia Marquez was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982.

While “Memories of My Melancholy Whores” is fiction, it may have its genesis in the author’s own life. Many of the stories by the pioneer of magical realism are based on real events, and the author himself frequented bordellos in his younger days.

Two years ago, Garcia Marquez released “Living to Tell the Tale” — memoirs of his life through 1955. In that book, he refers to visits he took to bordellos in Colombia’s coastal city of Barranquilla when he was a young journalist.

He wrote his new book, just 115 pages in the Spanish version, in Mexico City, where he has lived for many years.