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Bruno Blog

Sandra Bruna Literary Agency

A NOVEL WITH SOUL

Author: Sandra Bruna Thursday 15 October 2020

This week we should be in Frankfurt, but because of the Covid-19 pandemic we have not been able to travel and the fair must be virtual.  It is not the same, but it still has positive things, because all in life has a positive side. However, one of the things that this pandemic is teaching me is to value the things that I want and have, because when you do not have them you miss them. So, we must give value to what sometimes, out of pure routine, we do not value, and now, for me, memories are a brutal avalanche of emotions. I remember moments, places, and people, and my heart starts racing. I am moved by many things and it seems that I feel in a stronger way, although I always thought that I already was a person who feels too much, just like the protagonist of the new novel by Ana Alcolea, EL BRINDIS DE MARGARITA, published by Harper Collins. 

Margarita returns to her hometown to empty her parents’s house, a 1960s apartment in a working-class neighbourhood. In the meantime, the media is filled up with the exhumation of Franco’s body, which marked the lives of so many generations of the Spanish people. Of the four people who lived in that house, only Margarita remains. Her grandmother, her mother and her father have died in this order. She is an only child and is now left to do all the tasks on her own. Neither her husband nor her son accompanies her on this extreme journey, which is one of personal gain.

The smells that come from the clothes, the taste of the older drinks, the old passports, the books…  will transport her to different moments of her past life in the flat. Her own blame and the ghosts of the past that live in her memory are mixed with the history that marks her family’s life: a grandmother that lived all the wars of the century, a mother and a father that grew up in a post-war country that castrated their dreams; and herself, the protagonist and narrator in the first person, who was thirteen when the dictator died. Her memories fill the empty house, and through them, we can understand the attitudes of her family and herself with all that was happening in those years of the Transition in a better way. A novel full of nostalgia but at the same time a hard one, full of love and sorrow, a novel with feelings that give you goose bumps. The trademark of the novel is clearly one of the great times of Spain’s recent history: The Transition. But the most important thing is to get to know Margarita and her family, to see how they lived, how they sat and how they wrote their lives, which were not easy. But it is even more important to never give up living, right?

Everyone who has read Ana, knows that she has true passion for writing, that she is pleasant, and that her demands are huge. She has written for children, for young people and for her first time she is writing for adults, even though she has overcome the difficult test, because the smallest fans are always the ones who demand the most, entering the adult world is always a challenge, and Ana has done it in an amazing way, because she has been able to gift with these characters that feel, that create emotions to the public, achieving that the story itself becomes more important than the historical mark, which is shown in a very well narrated and documented way, but what remains in the reader are these smells, these memories of a time that has been the time of many citizens in Spain. Thank you Ana for not having written just any other novel, for having written with soul. Not all novels have soul, and that is the complicated part of writing, and here, Ana excels.

#MYMASKISABOOK

Author: Sandra Bruna Thursday 1 October 2020

The month of October begins and with it we start to dress with a jacket and boots from one day to another. We have overcome summer and we are entering this autumn, which most predict as cursed. October is the month of the Frankfurt Fair, the queen of book fairs, and this year we will have to celebrate it from distance, as we have done with almost everything. I confess that it is a fair that I have never liked, but after attending for 27 years I have known how to find the positive parts of it, the main one being the contact with the publishers, many already friends, from all over the world. It is true that technology makes it easier and easier for us to be in permanent contact with those who are farther away. Now a screen can show us the smiles and looks of people but deprives us of many other things, such as human contact, hugs, handshakes … in short, the proximity of the face to face. At the moment, we cannot achieve this through a computer, although I don’t really want it to be like that either, because in the end we would end up being more like robots than people. I hope that this is a transitional situation and that next year we can go to the fair and hug, kiss and cuddle each other again, because the essential part of business, from my point of view, is that human part. And now that a virus wants to take this essence away from us, for me the idea that these intangibles are the most important thing becomes stronger and nothing and nobody should take them away from us.

So this special year, the year of Covid19, in the agency we wanted to make a different catalog, a visual one with a clear motto: CULTURE IS SAFE. The books protect and save us, as does the famous mask today. There are masks of all models and colors, but ours is one of the most beautiful ones that exist and you can see it in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wmmW_aObf_M. In my opinion, books have survived everything, wars and pandemics, and this time they will do it again. We must be the first to not stop doing what we love the most, which is reading, and in that way, we will be able to feed the world with good stories.

Here we leave you our catalog: http://www.sandrabruna.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/FrankfurtRightsCatalogue_SandraBruna2020-Final-2.pdf. Together with this video full of virtual hugs and kisses, which I hope to be able to give you in person very soon. To all the editors that I will see on screen very soon, and to all the readers of this blog, to whom I thank for following us, I want to dedicate our most recent news, among which, surely you will find the book that can accompany you to face this autumn, an autumn that does not present itself as an  easy one, but we can still have many beautiful things and many unforgettable moments in it, some of them accompanied by a good book.

To finish, we would love that this campaign we have initiated for this so special fair of Frankfurt2020 called #MYMASKISABOOK, becomes viral. I hope that after seeing our video you will encourage yourself to share your photos with the best mask of this new season and that you will send them to us through our social networks (Twitter, Instagram and Facebook), tagging us so that we can make a global tribute to the books that have always helped us, in good and bad times, and through that campaign we will support culture, because without culture there is no future and as I always say BOOKS ARE LIFE, so don’t take them away from us.

THE LITERARY AND LIFE JOURNEY.

Author: Sandra Bruna Thursday 14 November 2019

The novel “La tortuga que huía del jaguar” (the tortoise that was escaping the jaguar) by Marta Quintín was the first book she sent to the agency. We spotted an indisputable literary quality but in the publishing world these kind of novels are hard to place if you don’t have a name yet, because it’s a difficult book that doesn’t fit into any particular genre: it’s just talent. So we told Marta to write something literary but with a more commercial topic and we published “El color de la luz” (the color of light), with Suma, and this is a novel I highly recommend to all the readers who want a love story in which the art is present on every page.

So everything started with this novel but we knew that Marta didn’t give up on her turtle, a book she wrote after her trip to Costa Rica, a literary and vital journey. We decided to submit the novel to the Valencia Prize, edited by Versátil, a publishing house that we really like how they work, and we crossed our fingers. And it happened: this novel, very special to Marta, was awarded the first prize. I know this book will also be special for the readers because it conveys passion, because you can smell the jungle and tropical atmosphere, and above all, because it makes you think how an act that we see or hear, like a turtle killed by a jaguar, can move you and lead you to embark on a journey of decision making, like it happens to our main character Marilia.

When she hears the news, she figures out that it’s time to leave home. Marilia leaves behind the aunt Granada and the enigmatic Jasón, who fishes for her. After saying goodbye to the Demon of the Dock, a monstrous being who is mocked by everyone in the village, she starts a journey that will take her through exotic places, but the most important one will be her past, the only way to understand the present. That’s how Marilia will discover a secret that will encourage her to make the wildest decision of her life, a fight to death between the two most powerful forces of human nature: fear and desire.

A novel that has finally found its place, now that more books are being published that do not need labeling, books that simply transmit, and I believe that’s what Marta achieves with this second novel.

WE’RE NOT HONEST WHEN IT COMES TO SEX.

Author: Sandra Bruna Thursday 7 November 2019

Writing this blog is not easy for me, because talking about sex is still a taboo among people of my generation. I think about it and I find it ridiculous, because I’m the first to think that this shouldn’t be this way. That’s why when Eva Moreno, sexologist and founder of  TAPERSEX®, told me that it was necessary this book, MI DESEO DEPENDE DE MI (My desire depends on me) about the sexual desire and the endless possibilities of the female masturbation, I knew she was right because the daily routine or being always in a rush makes sex the last thing of the list, and actually, it’s a very important part of life, whether you’re in a couple or not.

Why is sex always on that to-do list? Unconsciously, we are boycotting ourselves because sex will definitely make us feel better, but instead, we feel tired, we don’t find the right moment, or any excuse is good, so sex stays at the bottom of the line. I don’t believe that young people are going through the same situation, perhaps I’m wrong, but this guide is more addressed to women because they are the ones who wish to enjoy sex freely, without taboos. They want to explore new types of pleasures and, what’s most important, to take care of their own pleasure, which seems to stay always in the second place. Eva firmly believes that we’re sexual beings and, therefore, we cannot abstain ourselves from sexuality, even if we don’t practice it. She claims that having a sexual toy in the nightstand drawer prevents you from having sex with someone you don’t desire, or that sexual fantasies are a good way for arousing sexual desire and break with the routine, for example.

A useful book that provides real insights about how we should or we could be. Knowing all these big and little tips will help us a lot to approach sex in a different, innovative and more gratifying way.

STORIES FILL US WITH LIFE.

Author: Sandra Bruna Thursday 31 October 2019

This week I recommend a book that I really loved and it’s for children, or more accurately, for fathers and mothers that believe in the power of stories. When I was a little girl, my father used to make up stories, in which my brothers, friends and I were the protagonists, and I remember how we all sat together at the beach so he would tell us a new “adventure” – that’s how we called the story. It’s so beautiful this memory that I get goosebumps when I think about it, because it’s not easy to have a group of children between 10 and 12 years old sitting at the beach, just listening, enjoying… and that, by popular request, the activity of the day was to listen to those stories is something that moves me.  When we are kids, I think it is very important to count on someone who fosters this love for the tales, so you can grow happy and open up to the world of imagination.

Today, it’s not like before: there are so many inputs that distract us -not only the digital ones- that keep us away from stories and books, so it requires a biggest effort for parents to find a moment to tell stories, but we should definitely find it. And this book by Gabriel García de Oro and Puri Hernández have published with Anaya is wonderful: La Vuelta al año en 365 cuentos (the 365 stories of the year), so parents, grandfathers and uncles have the chance to tell a story every day of the year, and perhaps have the opportunity to invent your own tales as my father used to do. I believe that most of you will appreciate this book by Gabriel, with the stunning illustrations by Puri, so you will be able to have this magical moment of reading a tale every day that teaches us, amuses us and makes us grow in all senses. It’s the perfect gift for Christmas because you are not only giving away a book but also the opportunity of sharing a special moment with your closest ones: because life is made of little moments that later, you remember with affection and nostalgy. Giving away books is giving away life, and with these stories you open the door of the imagination, the sense of humor and the learning. Let’s fill the houses of unique moments made with words.



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