Barcelona, 1947

Jaume Cabré is an essential author in contemporary Catalan literature. For many years he combined his literary work with teaching and writing film and television scripts. His literary work is mainly novels and short stories, but he has also had plays published, as well as several books of reflections on writing and reading. His work, with titles such as La telaranya, Fray Junoy o l'agonia dels sons, Llibre de preludis, Senyoria, Les veus del Pamano and Jo confesso, and Viatge d’hivern, a book of short stories, has been translated in over twenty countries and has been an overwhelming success in Germany, Italy, France and the Netherlands, making him one of the most important authors on the current literary landscape.

  • “Jo confesso, by Jaume Cabré, the Catalan author, is a monumental novel” Osvaldo Gallone, Clarín
  • “Exceptional.” Sam Abrams, El Mundo
  • “Absolutely captivating.” Andrea Camilleri 
  • “Hitting the jackpot with Confessions, Cabré’s is a story of European history from the Inquisition to Auschwitz.” Le Figaro

Bibliography

With Cabré’s usual mastery and unmistakable confessional tone, the stories in Quan arriba la penombra flirt with the spirit of the noir novel and the pattern of classic cinema. The scenes of his crimes are inhabited by people who have lost faith and confess to being anguished, empty and resentful. They are all unforgettable characters who live in the strange innocence of maturity with the smile of crime on their faces.

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Novel

The Athens Prize for Literature  for the Best Work of Fiction Translated into Greek 2017; Stockholm Kulturhuset Stadsteatern  International Literature Prize  2017; Prix Jean Morer des Vendanges Littéraires de Rivesaltes 2014; Prix Courrier International du meilleur roman étranger 2013; Premi de la Crítica Catalana 2012

At 60, Adrià Ardèvol re-examines his life before his memory is systematically deleted. He recalls a loveless childhood where the family antique business and his father's study become the centre of his world; where a treasured Storioni violin retains the shadows of a crime committed many years earlier. His mother, a cold, distant and pragmatic woman leaves him to his solitary games, full of unwanted questions. An accident ends the life of his enigmatic father, filling Adrià's world with guilt, secrets and deeply troubling mysteries that take him years to uncover and driving him deep into the past where atrocities are methodically exposed and examined. Gliding effortlessly between centuries, and at the same time providing a powerful narrative that is at once shocking, compelling, mysterious, tragic, humorous and gloriously readable, Confessions reaches a crescendo that is not only unexpected but provides one of the most startling dénouements in contemporary literature.

Drawing comparisons with Shadow of the WindThe Name of the Rose and The Reader, and an instant bestseller in more than 25 languages, Confessions is an astonishing story of one man's life, interwoven with a narrative that stretches across centuries to create an addictive and unforgettable literary symphony.

 “Absolutely captivating.” Andrea Camilleri 

"Its complexity turns Confessions into a piece of writing that has the power to influence our view of the world –a quality belonging to the best of literature." El Mundo

"Jaume Cabré deserves to be recognized for what he is, one of the greats of world literature." Jordi Cervera

"A work of art more than a novel." Le Point

“Hitting the jackpot with Confessions, Cabré’s is a story of European history from the Inquisition to Auschwitz.” Le Figaro

"The narrative unfolds with suc creativity and mastery ... perfection from an author who has reached the very highest level of excellence in his craft. This book has earned its place alongside the classics." Joan Josep Isern

«Macondo is in the Pyrenees.» Die Welt

Originally a novel about teachers, it ended up as the story of a massive revenge in which maquis (guerrilla fighters), the Pyrenean landscape, the Franco dictatorship, economic interests, the Vatican, a cat and human passion all play leading roles.

Alban Berg said it in the concerto for violin and orchestra. Jaume Cabré says it in this novel.

The principal character, Miquel Gensana, a man pushing fifty, wonders whether there is any meaning to what he has done in his life. The time span of the novel covers a dinner with a girl in his family home in Feixes, now converted into a restaurant. And it is during this dinner that Miquel asks himself “at what moment did his life fall apart” and follows this with a lucid review of his past.

Miquel Gensana belongs to the generation that lived through the political activism of the 1960s, the clandestine opposition to the Franco regime. Now, after the transition that brought a return to democracy in Spain, distance allows him an ironic look at those past events. Deeply unsatisfied, and with a permanently sad expression, Gensana is also of an amorous nature but has little success with women. He could redeem himself through art, but he feels the frustration of someone who is not a creator but merely a critic. He would like to be the poet, the novelist, the musician – the artist reviewed – but he feels perpetually sterile because “when he looks back, the critic sees a eunuch’s shadow”, in the words of Georges Steiner.

The ruthless fight for power in 18th century Barcelona produces a string of victims, some more innocent than others.

The organist monk at the convent of Sant Aniol is sent to La Ràpita monastery as the nuns' father confessor. That's when the problems really start.

Set in early 20th century Catalonia, this is about the struggle for power within an industrial family against the backdrop of the Setmana Tràgica events (Tragic Week, 25 July to 2 August 1909).

Novela de Cabré en la que, por primera vez, aparece de forma evidente el tema de la música y, por extensión, el del valor de la creación en general.

The legendary bandit of Els Rasos, feared by some, admired by others both for his aggression and for his military talent, can't tell anyone that, basically, he is scared.

What do you expect from a character called Barringa Barranga? This is a woman who, when she retired a long time ago, got into the habit of chewing Arbequine olives. 

Short stories and novellas

With Cabré’s usual mastery and unmistakable confessional tone, the stories in Quan arriba la penombra flirt with the spirit of the noir novel and the pattern of classic cinema. The scenes of his crimes are inhabited by people who have lost faith and confess to being anguished, empty and resentful. They are all unforgettable characters who live in the strange innocence of maturity with the smile of crime on their faces. In these thirteen stories, we find a good number of objects and symbols that comprise a sort of tapestry of the aesthetics of evil. Men who walk into paintings, paintings that regurgitate men. Vile characters, respectable frauds who live imprisoned in the past by guilt or revenge. Art collectors, sheep thieves, bounty hunters and low-life criminals. Characters condemned to an outcome in which the only possible backdrop is death. None of them have a place reserved in Paradise. 

Cuento incluido en la antología Domèstics i salvatges. Deu contes d'animals.

Han sido los aliados imprescindibles de los héroes de ayer y objeto de la ternura de los personajes de novela de hoy. Pueden ayudar a encontrar la clave de un crimen abominable o servir de puente hacia la fantasía... Mimosos o crueles, salvajes o domésticos, los animales más diversos se han infiltrado en los cuentos de diez narradores catalanes: B. Porcel, M.A. Oliver, J. Cabré, V. Puig, V. Vidal, M. Domínguez, A. Villaró, J. Llavina, T. Sala, E. Piquer.

With this highly original collection of short stories, Catalonian writer Jaume Cabré takes his place among the masters of the form. In Winter Journey, the reader encounters disparate and often desperate characters —pianist, cuckold, whore, organ builder, rabbi, priest, scholar, thief, hitman, madman, Holocaust survivor, oligarch, failed artist— who challenge notions about will, morality, and “the riddle of existence.” This is not a selection of individual stories, but a singularly brilliant and enigmatic narrative, novelistic in its approach, with mysterious connections linking characters, objects, and ideas across time and place. The text takes the form of a Schubertian musical progression in prose, a philosophical mystery moving freely through a labyrinth of centuries and cities, historical and contemporary. 

Richly allusive with its themes and motifs of music and art, Winter Journey will continue to provoke questions long after the reader has closed the book.

'Le faufil musical de Jaume Cabré', En attendant Nadeau, 28/03/2017

What can happen in a spa when an ex-novice, an apprentice vampire and Claude Debussy, who was only there for a rest, meet each other? And other stories.

Collection of short stories with which the author became known and won the Prize Víctor Català in 1973.

Books for children and young readers

A tender an adorable story that Jaume Cabré wrote to his granddaugther Mariona. Illustrated by Romina Martí.

Mariona decides to get into the Land of Stories with her cat in order to solve a problem: for a long time, herons steal the shadows of the living creatures to feed Miss Eatnights. People and animals are extremely tired with no shadows, so Mariona decides to speak to Miss Eatnights to teach her how to do right her job: she should make the Night every sunset and eat it early in the morning, instead of devouring the stolen shadows that herons bring to her... But Eatnights seems very relaxed in her cave, so Mariona gathers all the cats of the village in order to frighten her and push her out of the cave... 

Peter has lost his truck… Who will help him find it? Peter has gone out of his home at night in search of his fire truck and has gone deep into the woods. Some animals observe him with curiosity. An owl, a squirrel and a hedgehog... He doesn’t notice. What will he be able to do to have his fire truck back? Illustrated by Júlia Sardà.

Cuando el Alción decidió dejar la selva y conocer el mundo, tuvo que aprender mucho sobre las costumbres del frío y el calor en nuestro país ya que, en la selva, el tiempo siempre era el mismo. Con ilustraciones de Pep Boatella.

Los arqueólogos hallan, en Vilanova de Sau, un esqueleto de la época del neolítico. Los niños del pueblo se interesan por el hallazgo. Pero alguien más también se interesa... Ilustraciones de Ismael Balanyà.

¿Qué puede hacer un chico de ahora que, de repente, se encuentra en la Barcelona de 1714 en pleno bombardeo de la ciudad? ¡Qué sabía, el pobre!

Theatre

Ha muerto el Papa Luna, el último pontífice, para muchos, de la causa de Aviñón. En el castillo de Peníscola, los auténticos cardenales de la cristiandad buscan sucesor. En el exterior estalla la tormenta...

Non-fiction

Una reflexión sobre el hecho creativo y los interrogantes que el autor ha encontrado a lo largo de su trayectoria literaria.

After El sentit de la ficció (The Meaning of Fiction), focused on writing, it was time for the author to reflect on a crucial matter for the novelist: reading.

A reflection of the author about his own creative process.

Anthology / Selection

An anthology of stories on a musical theme taken from Llibre de preludis (Book of Preludes) and Viatge d'hivern (Winter Journey). Edited by Maria del Roser Trilla.

Other genres

  • Ventdelpla. Biblia 2a temporada telenovela. Con Jordi Calafí y Núria Parera. 2005
  • Nautes. Telefilm. 2004
  • Nines russes. Telefilm. 2003
  • Sara. Telefilm. 2003
  • Crims. Serie TV. Creación y dirección de guionistas (Jaume Cabré i Manel Bonany). 2000
  • Estació d'enllaç. Serie TV. Creación (con Joaquim M.Puyal) y dirección de guionistas. 1994-1998
  • Havanera. Film. En colaboración con Jaume Fuster, Vicenç Villatoro y Antoni Verdaguer. 1993
  • La teranyina. Film. En colaboración con Jaume Fuster, Vicenç Villatoro y Antoni Verdaguer. 1990
  • La granja. Serie TV. Creación (con Joaquim M.Puyal) y dirección guionistas.1989-1992
  • Fins que la mort ens separi. Radionovela. 1989
  • La teranyina. Radionovela. 1988
  • La dama blanca. Telefilm. 1987
  • Estimada Loreto. Telefilm (Guión de Marta Balletbó-Coll sobre un relato de Jaume Cabré). 1986

Prizes

Prizes for his body of work:

  • 2017 - Premi a la Trajectòria de La Setmana del Llibre en Català
  • 2016 - Prix Ulysse à l'ensemble de son oeuvre, Festival Arte-Mare, Bastia, Corsica
  • 2015 - Premio de Honor de la Plaça del Llibre de València
  • 2014 - Creu de Sant Jordi
  • 2013 - Premio Socarrat Major
  • 2010 - 42nd Premi d'Honor de les Lletres Catalanes
  • 2003 - Premio Jaume Fuster dels Escriptors Catalans


Prizes for a specific work:

  • 2017 - The Athens Prize for Literature for the Best Work of Fiction Translated into Greek for Jo confesso
  • 2017 - Stockholm Kulturhuset Stadsteatern International Literature Prize for Jo confesso
  • 2014 - Prix Jean Morer des Vendanges Littéraires de Rivesaltes for Jo confesso
  • 2013- Premi Ciutat de Barcelona a la Projecció Internacional de la Ciutat; 
  • 2013 - Prix Courrier International du meilleur roman étranger for Jo confesso 
  • 2012 - Premi Joan Crexells de l'Ateneu Barcelonès; Premio La Tormenta en un vaso; Premi de Narrativa Maria Àngels Anglada; Premi de la Crítica Serra d'Or; Premi de la Crítica Catalana; for Jo confesso 
  • 2007 - Premio de Novel·la Setè Cel for Les veus del pamano
  • 2005 - Premi de la Crítica Catalana for Les veus del pamano 
  • 2004 - Prix Méditerranée for the best foreign novel Senyoria (Honour)
  • 2001 - Premi de la Crítica Serra d'Or for Viatge d'hivern 
  • 1999 - Premi Fundació Enciclopèdia Catalana for Viatge d'hivern 
  • 1997 - Premi Ciutat de Barcelona; Premi Lletra d'Or; Premi de la Crítica Serra d'Or;  for L'ombra de l'eunuc
  • 1992 - Premio de la Crítica Catalana; Premio Prudenci Bertrana awarded by readers and critics; Premi de la Crítica Serra d'Or; for Senyoria
  • 1991 - Premi dels Lectors from the magazine El Temps; Premi Joan Crexells de l'Ateneu Barcelonès; for Senyoria 
  • 1985 - Premi de la Crítica Catalana; Premi de la Crítica Serra d'Or; for Fra Junoy o l'agonia dels sons
  • 1983 - Premi Prudenci Bertrana, for Fra Junoy o l'agonia dels sons
  • 1983 - Premi Sant Jordi, for La teranyina
  • 1981 - Premi Crítica Serra d'Or, for La història que en Roc Pons no coneixia 
  • 1980 - Premio Fastenrath, for Carn d'olla 
  • 1977 - Premi Joaquim Ruyra, for Galceran, l'heroi de la guerra negra 
  • 1973 - Premi Víctor Català for Faules de mal desar