LETTER TO CHARO
por Estrella Cardona Gamio
Traducción: © 2016 Olga
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LETTER TO CHARO is not a novel like all the rest in its presentation.
For starters it is an epistolary novel, a genre that was fashionable
in other eras and that has left us works like DANGEROUS LIAISONS
to mention a particularly fine example. It’s a very interesting
genre because through its structure, and in the first person,
intimate stories are narrated that slowly reveal the most closely
guarded secrets of its characters.
In LETTER TO CHARO
the reader will find the story of two friends who’ve known
each other from childhood and carried on being friends through
the years and the distance when the husband of one of them, for
work reasons, has to move to London with his family. Throughout
the years they exchange letters, until a certain day when an event
that has nothing to do with either of them, the death of a famous
Italian cinema actor, Marcello Mastroianni, sends them on a trip
down memory lane unearthing confidences that had been hiding for
decades and discovering two people who are complete strangers
to each other.
characteristic of this novel is that the letters that are exchanged
between the protagonists open with one dated the same day when
I first started writing LETTER TO CHARO, and, the intervals between
the letters are authentic. The truth is that I wrote the novel
as if its protagonists were dictating it to me.
In this work, romantic
and sentimental, you’ll find various degrees of love revealed
in detail: tenderness, nostalgia, rivalry, egotism, envy, jealousy
and uncontrollable and wild passion. You should not miss it, follow
I have tried to respect the
style of the author and the sense of urgency and closeness of
the correspondence written to (mostly) those close to us, which
follows the style of our speech and the wanders of our mind, rather
than grammar rules or best-practice when writing formal texts.
I have adapted casual expressions but have always tried to maintain
the meaning and the spirit of the original.
With regards to
titles of books and/or movies mentioned in the book, I’ve
adopted the ones more commonly used, although sometimes different
editions or movies in different countries might be known by different
titles. I have added only a few parenthetical notes where I felt
that the general reading public might not be familiar with the
term and it is fundamental to follow the gist of the story.
I am very grateful
to the author and to her sister for giving me the opportunity
to translate this short novel that I fell in love with as a reader.