César Aira

The Divorce

Shortlisted for the 2022 Queen Sofía Spanish Institute Translation Prize

Shortlisted for the Premio Valle-Inclan prize for its translation


Introduction by Patti Smith

‘It is certain that The Divorce will leave you breathless.’ Patti Smith

A recently divorced man trying to enjoy himself in one of the trendier districts of Buenos Aires finds himself at the centre a series of strange coincidences. These blips in causality are at first easily rationalised, but soon escalate from the merely implausible to the impossible to the cataclysmic. More, each accident of fate, piling one atop the other, drags a new, rambling tale in its wake, until the very ground beneath the man’s feet seems likely to buckle beneath the weight of so many shaggy dogs.

And yet, with master storyteller César Aira holding their leashes, what better vacation from reality could any reader—or divorcé—desire?

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EBook: £6.99

More Info

Print status: Available
Author: César Aira
Translator: Chris Andrews
Original language: Spanish
Format: B-format paperback
Publication date: 1 June 2021
ISBN: 9781913505042
Ebook ISBN: 9781913505059
Availability: UK, EUR & Comm (excl Can)
Number of pages: 120


Patti Smith

‘The Divorce outlines the process for those wishing to comprehend or to experience the expansive possibilities of a single moment. That is his wondrous gift, and The Divorce is the personification of that gift.’

David Kurnick
Public Books

‘The Divorce seems to me the secret centre of his work, a book compressing all the Airan effects – above all his gift for compression. The novel’s speed is breathtaking . . . By the time this miraculously dense book has reached its conclusion, Aira has wheeled through the gothic novel, noir, sci-fi, family saga, social satire. It is almost impossible to believe the text occupies only 115 pages.’

Rodolfo Biscia

‘El divorcio . . . is a story whose “artefactual” perfection could relaunch the conversation about the good and the bad Airas.’