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Bruno Blog

Sandra Bruna Literary Agency

FROM NEW YORK

Author: Sandra Bruna Thursday 4 February 2016

This week I’m writing the blog from New York, where I came to be with my friend, my author, Francesc Miralles during the launching of his book AMOR EN MINÚSCULA in the USA. Penguin Random House has seen in this story the same thing more than 18 editors have seen (Spain (Ediciones B), Catalonia (Ara Llibres), UK (Alma Books), France (Fleuve Noir), Germany (Ullstein), Greece (Psichogios), Italy (Giunti Editore), Brasil (Record), Portugal (Marcador), Norwey (Cappelen), Croatia (Znanje), Czech Republic (Leda), Turkey (Pena Yayinlari), Estonia (Tapanaev), Lithuania (Tyto alba), Macedonia (TRI), China (Ping’s and Yilin) and Korea (Munhakdongne)), a MAGICAL story.

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It’s an honor to be able to be here, next to Francesc, supporting him, applauding this novel that we’ve worked on for a lot of years and that hasn’t stopped paying off, because none of us have ever put it aside. It came out on the 27th of January in the USA and in a few hours they will start working on the second edition.

It’s true that in the United States everything is large scale, even the book world, but with reviews like these in BookPage, Bookwinked, Two Classy Chics Chat, Four Chicks Flipping Pages or in Undeniably {Book} Nerdy, who can doubt that they’ll fall in love with Mishima? A stray cat that’s able to change Samuel’s losing path. Both characters will charm the reader and, without even realizing, he’ll feel better, more complete.

A moving story, fun and intelligent that won’t leave you indifferent and will make you end up with that great feeling of I loved it and I want more. And then, you can go look for WABI-SABI, which is in Spanish, but not in English yet, but we are here to keep fighting. Congratulations Francesc Miralles, you have really earned it.

A DARK WEEKEND

Author: Sandra Bruna Thursday 28 January 2016

Many of you may know that my shelter is Sant Pol de Mar, a town where I’ve spent my summers ever since I was a teenager, and that I feel is a very important part of my life, because that’s where I’ve made the best friends, where I’ve spent the best summers, and now my son is enjoying the same way I did, because we’re no longer limited to summers, now we go every weekend to escape from the city. I love the sea, the sunsets and the town life, calm, relaxed, where we already know most of the residents and they’re part of our lives, in some way. And this past weekend, we’ve had to live a tragedy. On Friday they killed a 35 year old boy in the middle of the street, like in the Bronx, in a violent and treacherous way. I still can’t understand it, I can’t accept people that evil exist, capable of killing in the middle of the street and with he didn’t even hesitate although he wasn’t well, he was drunk and drugged, because something like this, I think, can’t be forgiven. I didn’t know Bruno too much, that was his name, but he was as kind person, like his brothers, who I know a bit better, because they have a restaurant where we normally go a couple of times during the summer, but I can’t stop thinking about him, about the few times we exchanged some words, about his family, his neighbors and friends, who were all devastated. Sadness was in the air, you could almost touch it. It’s unfair, and once again real life beats fiction, since we couldn’t expect something like this from a town like Sant Pol, where everything is calm and in peace. I still can’t get that Friday out of my mind, and I feel sad, because it’s an unfair situation, that seems unreal, I wish it had been the plot to one of the novels I can recommend every week in my blog, and not something that happened and left us all with a broken heart, sad eyes, and a bitter feeling that won’t be easily forgotten, and even less by the people of Sant Pol, almost all of them Bruno’s friends or family, to whom I can only say that I’m sorry and to stay strong, even though it’s not easy.

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This week we also have to talk about black Barcelona, and with a novel that I cherish very much, because it’s been hard to bring it to life, not because it wasn’t good enough, you can check, but because sometimes it’s not easy to fit all the pieces together exactly when you want it and how you want it. Nonetheless, the determination to trust, both author and us, and to sail in the same direction, has leaded us to winning the LA TRAMA prize for Crime Novel, published by Ediciones B, with the novel, that was called EL ESPÍA RUSO before they published it, when we read it at home and we loved it, and now that it’s published it has a more commercial name, PARA MORIR SIEMPRE HAY TIEMPO, which we love, but for nostalgic reasons, which may only be understood by us at the house and the author, to me it will always be EL ESPÍA RUSO, which tells us the story of a frustrated writer, obsessive and hooked to her medication, Julia Irazu, who’s a real expert in complicating her own life, but this time the problems come from the outside. By accident, she sees herself stuck in an art trafficking network, between millionaire interests and ruthless criminals, and she meets Viktor Sokolov, a so-called Russian spy next to whom she’ll live a dangerous adventure through Bilbao, Palermo and St Petersburg. But, that will be the moment when Julia discovers a basic principle that she didn’t know about. It turns out that there’s always time to die. Owner of an addictive writing and a smooth sense of humor, Carmen Conde strongly irrupts into the literary scene of the moment, ready to steal many hours of the reader’s sleep, this spy novel is like none other and I’m convinced that you’ll be stuck on the sofa because you won’t be able to stop reading even if you want to. I congratulate Carmen Conde for this award, for getting her book published and for her patience and trust in our job. I hope that those who like strong, crime novels with a plot that won’t let them stop even to take a breath, will buy it and will give this new voice an opportunity, she’s here to stay.

PURE MYTHOLOGY

Author: Sandra Bruna Thursday 21 January 2016

Being a literary agent is a glamorous job, or that’s what it looks like, it looks good on the business card, at presentations, dinners, literary prizes and trips. People want to know what we do, and they find it fun and thrilling, which it is, but it’s mostly shady. The truth is that I’m an agent almost by chance; I started working at a literary agency when I was very young and from the very bottom, as a courier, but I started working my way up and learning from scratch… The best degree, I can assure you, is EXPERIENCE. But, although “glamorous”, it’s also hard, difficult and stressful.

Being a mediator, being in the middle, is always complicated; and more so when you have to fight for the interests of another person, who has given you all their trust, because if he hadn’t it would never work out. You have to be careful and charming at the same time, and you really have to control the game so nobody ends up offended, mad, or thinking you’re trying to rip them off. The truth is that people do things in different ways, but I try to always be the same. Being clear, honest and trying to do whatever is best for my client but always being good, isn’t always easy. Nevertheless, I must confess that this job hooks you, like Coke, the more you drink the more you want, because our day to day, even if filled with stress and difficulties, is almost addictive, and it’s difficult, not to say impossible, to stop thinking about the books, the stories and the goals.

Sometimes I’m not even aware of the huge authors I represent, who are on the New York Times bestselling books list, and in newspapers around the world, and it’s an honor to have built a path for these huge authors in the markets where I’m able to manage their rights. Authors like Amy Tan, Yann Martel, John Green or Ricky Riordan are part of my life, and it sometimes seems like a dream… It’s as if I were watching a movie where I’m one of the main characters, but I can hardly believe it’s real. I guess it’s the magic in my job, that you enjoy knowing you can give big stories a shape, you can help make writers dreams come true, and most of all you can make the book world grow, or at least that’s the purpose. I guess this world is a bit mythified, but when you’re in it, I think we mythify it ourselves and that’s why we keep hanging on to it sometimes.

And speaking of MYTHS, but another kind, this week, Rick Riordan’s saga is coming out to the market; THE SWORD OF SUMMER is a new MAGNUS CHASE series, where he’ll introduce us to Viking “myths”, with these interesting and shuddering adventures, like he’s done with his previous sagas like PERCY JACKSON and THE HEROES OF OLYMPUS.

Llibres Magnus Chase

Magnus Chase has seen his share of trouble; he’s lived alone on the streets of Boston, trying to avoid both the police and the truant officers. One day he discovers he has someone else chasing him down: his mysterious and newcomer uncle Randolph, who reveals an impossible secret; Magnus is really the son of a northern God. The Viking’s myths are real. The Gods of Asgard are preparing for the Great War. Trolls, giants and horrendous creatures are preparing for Ragnarok, the end of the world. With help from Sam, a Valkyrie who secretly hates him, Blitzen the dwarf and Hearthstone the elf, both fugitives, Magnus will travel through the nine worlds searching for the only weapon that can stop Ragnarok: a legendary sword that was lost thousands of years before… And on the way he’ll have to make the most difficult decisions; because sometimes, in order to save yourself, you have to die.

Penguin Random House keeps betting on an author with the brilliant idea of taking mythology to the field of adventure and therefore making the perfect cocktail.

FRIENDSHIP AND LOYALTY ARE POSSIBLE SOMETIMES

Author: Sandra Bruna Thursday 14 January 2016

It’s already been two years since I first started writing this blog and it’s only natural to sometimes repeat those things I strongly believe in, so you must have already read that he who has a friend has a treasure, because I really believe so, although it’s complicated to find out who really is a friend and who’s not.  We feel betrayed and frustrated because people we think are essential in our life end up walking by it just for a moment or end up being something other than what we thought. The worst part is not knowing why or not being able to find out. But it’s good to face relationships just as they come in your life and to know that, other than people, you can also count on animals. Many of us have pets, mainly cats and dogs, which we love like members of our family. I like dogs way more than cats. For example, and even though I’ve never had one, I love their loyalty, and I see my friends with their dogs, that special bond they have, and they often tell me themselves, that their dog is better than some people, and it keeps them better company. And that’s how Alejandro Palomas portrays it in his last novel, UN PERRO, already in bookstores around Spain, to steal our heart once again.

After UNA MADRE, a novel that’s already on its 9th edition and hasn’t stopped receiving compliments, and after UN HIJO, which won the Joaquim Ruyra prize in 2014 and sweats magic, we have UN PERRO that shows that fascinating relationship that’s only possible between a man and his dog, that only some may understand and others may respect, but the existence of this relationship is real, and Alejandro, as well as Cesc Gay in TRUMAN, are witnesses.

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Like all of the novels by Palomas, this one won’t leave you indifferent, not those who like dogs nor those who don’t, because it’s a novel that talks about life and how complicated it is to keep relationships and to speak with the heart. Palomas excels one more time and uncovers himself, flustering us with the relationships in his family. With R and our Amalia, and I say “our” because I’m sure that many readers already feel like they know her and even love her, without forgetting the unforgettable look in Fer and his two sisters’ faces.

It’s another unique moment in life, as if there was nothing else happening, where the characters, blow up once again, for better or worse. Alejandro knows how to hit where it hurts, and how to bring us to a great smile just with the description of a precise moment, that will once again trigger revelations and the truths. Precisely how it happens in the best families and in the best relationships. Saying things, the truth, in the best way possible without hurting, or without offending is so difficult it’s an art, but anything can be conquered with LOVE, even our greatest fears. With this novel that hits us straight in the heart we are able to suffer, we laugh and in the end we acknowledge how hard it is to write about feelings, and how easy Alejandro makes it seem, leaving us with a novel that I’m sure will leave its paw print.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Author: Sandra Bruna Thursday 24 December 2015

NADAL-2015

Today the agency is closing until January 3rd. The 4th we’ll be back full of energy, and from here, I would like to wish you all a very happy Christmas and a fantastic 2016, a year full of the important things in life: peace, love, health and books.

Books help us to see life from different points of view, and with them the journey is always more enjoyable. So in this season of gifts, I hope you do not forget the hugs, smiles and best novels. Many of them can be found here.

Happy Holidays!



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