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Revolution Sunday

Translated by Achy Obejas

Cleo, scion of a once-prominent Cuban family and a promising young writer in her own right, travels to Spain to collect a prestigious award. There, Cuban expats view her with suspicion — assuming she’s an informant for the Castro regime. To Cleo’s surprise, that suspicion follows her home to Cuba, where she finds herself under constant surveillance by the government. When she meets and falls in love with a Hollywood filmmaker, she discovers her family is not who she thought they were… and neither is the filmmaker.

WENDY GUERRA, born in Havana in 1970, is a Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres and was selected for Bogotá 39, the prestigious group of writers from the Hay Bogotá project. In 2015 and 2016, she was a visiting professor at Princeton and UCLA.

From an early age, she found success as a poet, publishing her first volume of poetry aged 17 whilst attending the University of Havana. She later pursued studies in filmmaking and hosted a number of TV shows about culture and television on the national Cuban broadcaster. She began to circulate and publish her texts abroad, to great critical acclaim. As a result of this success, she has been considered with suspicion by Cuban intelligence services and has remained largely unpublished in her native country. Drawing inspiration from her diaries and also from the visual arts, her texts often combine filmic, personal, and poetic elements.

ACHY OBEJAS is the award-winning author of The Tower of The Antilles, which was nominated for a PEN/Faulkner award. Her other books include the critically acclaimed Ruins and Days of Awe. As a translator, she’s worked with Wendy Guerra, Junot Díaz, Rita Indiana, Megan Maxwell and many others. A Havana native, she lives in Benicia, California.

“An explosive portrait of loneliness and isolation. Thick with the atmosphere of Cleo’s Havana on the cusp of the Cuban thaw, the novel reads like the world’s most poetic anxiety dream, vibrant and stifling. Demanding and unforgettable.” – *STARRED* Kirkus Review

“[A] riveting, poetic, fever dream of a novel.” – Ploughshares

“Radical… Revolution Sunday is about creating art under surveillance, and about our homelands’ inescapable pull… Guerra is a fearless writer, and she’s lucky to have a fearless translator [in Achy Obejas]. Together, they make Revolution Sunday more vivid than life.” – Lily Meyer, NPR

“With lyrical prose and on-target character development, Guerra tells Cleo’s story with a razor-like touch. …packed with pathos and humanity.”Book Reporter

“Genre-defying… Guerra fuses poetry and prose to track the hallucinatory lives of both her protagonist and her country… Achy Obejas’s translation deftly reproduces the searing and ethereal quality of Guerra’s voice, one that is ultimately in pursuit of liberation from the confines of politics and fear….Guerra writes a world where there is no escape from the potency of her poetics.” – Asymptote Journal

“Unclassifiable…beautiful.” – CrimeReads

“[A] Kafkaesque art thriller… Havana’s slow political thaw brings new texture and urgency to the genre of political paranoia.” – Vulture

“Not to be missed.” – Bustle

“Sensual, atmospheric”—Jane Ciabattari, BBC.com

“Lyrical and potent… Guerra’s captivating tale is an intriguing depiction of art amid corruption, and a reminder of the power in a singular voice.” —Publishers Weekly

”[A] lyrical and breathless novel … Guerra’s novel is a riveting look into the lives of artists attempting free expression in censored regimes.”—BOOKLIST

Revolution Sunday brilliantly portrays the strangeness and dislocation of surveillance and exile… I love the sharpness of the voice, the gorgeous prose, and the surreal humor.”—Laura van den Berg, author of The Third Hotel

“Fascinating…it’s eye-opening in more ways than one.” – Entertainment Weekly

“Guerra brings in her knowledge of media and storytelling, creating a rich backdrop before which this narrative unfolds.” – Vol. 1 Brooklyn

“Darkly funny… about art, sex, writing, government surveillance and identity…all very relevant to a lot of us these days.” – Book Riot

Other praise for Wendy Guerra:

“Wendy Guerra is a rare bird in a country where everyone is seeking conclusive adjectives and extreme descriptions. Actress, writer, blogger and a Havanan down to her core, she always stands out.” —Yoani SánchezHuffington Post

“Havana’s literary darling.” —La Habana

 

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