Los pasos perdidos

Los pasos perdidos / The Lost Steps

Novel , 1953


Pages: 288

Dissatisfied with his empty, Sisyphus-like existence in New York City, where he has abandoned his creative dreams for a job in corporate advertising, a highly cultured aspiring composer wants nothing more than to tear his life up from the root. He soon finds his escape hatch: a university-sponsored mission to South America to look for indigenous musical instruments in one of the few areas of the world not yet touched by civilization. Retracing the steps of time, he voyages with his lover into a land that feels outside of history, searching not just for music but ultimately for himself, and turning away from modernity toward the very heart of what makes us human.

“An erudite yet absorbing adventure story. A book full of riches—stylistic, sensory, visual.” The New York Times Book Review 

“Extraordinary.” The New Yorker 

“The greatest novel to have appeared in Latin America in our time.” Le Figaro Littéraire 

Alejo Carpentier's work is brilliant and timeless.” Jorge Luis Borges 

“Beautiful and stirring . . . One of [Carpentier’s] finest works . . . which for many readers is the most alluring of his novels.” Leonardo Padura, from the Introduction to The Lost Steps

“If Carpentier is ever to get a new reading in English, it should be now...” Natasha Wimmer, The New York Review of Books