The Names of the Air
Translated by Mark Schafer

Villaurrutia Prize for Best Mexican Novel

Set in an imaginary walled city off the coast of Morocco, Mogador traces the days and nights of Fatma, a young woman who finds herself suddenly seized by desire. As she wanders the city's maze of erotic pleasures, she encounters other desiring bodies and the desperate worlds those desires create. Here is a vital fusion of Latin America magical realism with Arabic geometric and mystical imagery, written in a style the author calls a "prose of intensities."

"This extremely talented Mexican writer...assumes his own Islamic roots in one of the best-written novels of recent years. He is truly a painter of dreams, who manages to fuse the most unblemished sensuality with the most transparent spirituality." --Luce Lopez Baralt

"Memorable novella about being both untouched and seized--all described in prose that mixes dreamy arabesque with crystalline precision." --Kirkus Review

"Ruy Sanchez balances a double paradox: his novella about female desire, written by a man, criticizes Islamic and Latin-American concepts of male dominance. It's a dazzling philosophical conundrum -- a Sphinx-like riddle that only a king or a poet could solve. In any event, the pervasive desire in Mogador is particularized: it's the calling out of one body to another, one spirit to another, one soul to another. . . . This infatuating novella is not about eroticism; it's about love." --William Hollinger, Boston Review

Title Mogador
Subtitle The Names of the Air
Translated by Mark Schafer
Publisher City Lights Publishers
BISAC Subject Heading FIC000000 FICTION
Title First Published 01 November 1992
Format Paperback
Nb of pages 124 p.
ISBN-10 0872862712
ISBN-13 9780872862715
Publication Date 01 November 1992
Main content page count 124
Weight 16 oz.
List Price $10.95

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Literature in Translation
Middle East/North Africa

Arabic mystical imagery, Latin American writing in translation, magical realism, Mexican writing, novels set in Morocco, spirituality, writing about female desire