Mateo García Elizondo

Mateo García Elizondo

Una cita con la Lady

Una cita con la Lady / An Appointment with the Lady

Novel , 2019


Pages: 200

2019 City of Barcelona Literature Award

A spectral journey between life and death, between love and its loss. Mateo García Elizondo's excellent debut.

“I came to Zapotal to die once and for all. As soon as I set foot in the town I got rid of everything I had in my pockets, the keys to the house I abandoned in the city, and anything with my name or a picture of my face on it. I have nothing left but three thousand pesos, two hundred grams of opium and a quarter of an ounce of heroin, and that should be enough to kill me.” The protagonist and narrator of this novel goes in search of a definitive appointment with ‘the lady’ in the form of white powder. And to do so he embarks on a journey to the end of the night; he has a succession of disturbing encounters, with the ghosts of friends who have died along the way, with his memories of the great city he left behind, and with his own past.

The opening sentence of the novel evokes the famous beginning of Rulfo's Pedro Páramo, and there are echoes in its pages of the grotesque Mexican carnival of self-destruction of Malcolm Lowry's Under the Volcano. In this extraordinary and surprising debut, Mateo García Elizondo uses hypnotic, absorbing prose to narrate a journey into the heart of darkness, the spectral descent into hell of an addict who takes a path with only one possible destination, which comes closer and closer.