From: Elena Seeley [] Sent: Tuesday, November 3, 2015 11:33 AM
Subject: Forthcoming novel from Archipelago Books

I am writing on behalf of Archipelago Books, an independent press devoted to international literature, about our forthcoming title, Private Life by Josep Maria de Sagarra, out this November. We believe that this novel would work well in a variety of curricula due to its historical, cultural and literary significance and wanted to make sure that you knew about its release. If the novel might be of interest to you and you would like to take a closer look, please let me know and we would be happy to send a PDF.

First published in 1932 as a scathing critique of the decadent and disappearing aristocratic class of Catalonia, Private Life holds up a mirror to the moral corruption in the interstices of the Barcelona high society Sagarra was born into. Reflecting the transformation of society at the beginning of the Spanish Republic, the novel portrays life in vivid, sordid, and literary detail. Practically a roman-à-clef for its contemporaries, the work was a scandal in 1932. The 1960s edition was bowdlerized by Franco’s censors. Now, Mary Ann Newman now brings this essential piece of 20th century literature to the English-speaking public.

Josep Maria de Sagarra was a Catalan journalist, theater critic, translator, poet, and novelist who produced volumes of poetry, drama, essays and three major novels, which made him one of the most popular and loved voices of Catalan literature. After winning his first poetry prize in the Juegos Florales, he decided to devote his life to literature. He was a member of the Institute of Catalan Studies, the Academy of Letters, the General Council of Authors of Spain, and the council of the Grand Cross of the Civil Order of Alfonso X the Wise.

Praise for Private Life:

“A satirical, multigenerational saga about the intricate relationship between Barcelona’s fading aristocracy and the city’s sordid demimonde… Expect murder, revenge, and fallings in and out of love … The novel comes most alive when the author digresses from his plot: in his characters’ back stories, his ruminations on Spain’s socioeconomics, his cleverly vicious bons mots and descriptions … and in some surprisingly graphic sex… In this casual, colloquial translation, Barcelona between the wars is full of tawdry vitality, much like the novel itself.”

— Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Private Life, by Josep Maria de Sagarra is a delightful, intelligent and exciting novel, the best ever written about Barcelona. One of the high points of 20th century Catalan and European literature, it is an unflinching portrait of the social mores of the high and low classes, the desire to be someone, and the destruction of a way of life. The changes that came about in the 20s and 30s have led inexorably to the Barcelona of today. Now that the city is in vogue, it is providential that the millions of people who visit every year will be able to read Private Life.”

— Quim Monzó, best-selling author of Gasoline and A Thousand Morons

“What really makes Private Life a compelling read are Sagarra’s vivid details of this crumbling society and his keen observations about it…thanks to Mary Ann Newman and her sparkling translation, Sagarra’s masterpiece is finally available in English.”

— Three Percent Review

Thank you so much for your time.

Best regards,

Elena Seeley