An Empty House


An Empty House

Carlos Cerda
Translated by Andrea G. Labinger

245 pages


November 2003


$21.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

A story of contemporary Chile by one of its most prominent novelists, An Empty House depicts the dissolution of an upper-middle-class family against a chilling background of exile, return, and discovery. The stark and moving narrative suggests the enormity of the horrors perpetrated in Chile over the last decades, horrors that resonate through the culture to this day. Cecilia and Manuel accept her father’s gift of a house, in hope of repairing their unraveling marriage along with the badly scarred building. Instead, the couple’s efforts expose the horrifying truth about the building—and reveal the subtle strands of complicity, responsibility, and indifference that bind them to each other, their country, and its dark past.
With its deftly drawn characters, play of ideas, and vivid dialogue, An Empty House gives English-speaking readers a memorable portrait of Chile today: honest, brutally realistic, but with a redemptive touch of lyricism and hope.

Author Bio

Carlos Cerda (1942–2001) was born in Chile and lived in exile in East Berlin following the coup that deposed Salvador Allende. In 1985 Cerda returned to Chile where he remained until his death. An Empty House received three of Chile’s most prestigious literary prizes: the Premio Municipal de Literatura, the Premio del Consejo Nacional del Libro, and the Premio del Círculo de Críticos de Arte. Andrea G. Labinger is a professor of Spanish at the University of La Verne, California. Her many translations include Cerda’s To Die in Berlin and Alicia Steimberg’s Call Me Magdalena (Nebraska 2001).

Also of Interest