55 BOOK: Cochabamba – (2023)

January 23, 2024

Jorge F. Hernández (Mexico, 1962)

This is the first time I’ve read anything by this author. I love his columns in the newspaper, but I’ve never dared to read his books before. I’ve been following him for a while. Once, at the Madrid Book Fair, I saw him in a booth signing copies. I love seeing Mexican writers at events like that. My favourite human and I approached and bought one of his short story books, and he kindly signed it for us. Later, we engaged in a conversation, and he seemed so pleasant. He has a fantastic way of conveying wisdom and an exquisite ability to converse and use humour.

He lives in Madrid and decided to venture into continuing the legacy of one of the oldest bookstores in the city, which is now his. He was fired from his job for political reasons, so now he ventures as a bookseller. I follow him on social media, and his personality is so interesting that it’s impossible to forget.

Reading his book, I could imagine him narrating the story to me. I felt like I could hear his voice, his accent; I knew where he would emphasise specific words. That’s how some writers are, with a very intriguing imprint.

This novel is written in a very creative way. I expected him to tell us about Catalina’s life as the Princess of Cochabamba, but instead, we get to know her as the adventure of writing this book unfolds. The author takes us through his encounters with Catalina’s son and how he asked him to tell this story 21 years ago. So, in this book, you get two beautiful stories: Catalina’s and the adventure of writing in restaurants and enjoying tasty meals in Mexico.

It’s a book to relax, laugh, and marvel at Jorge F. Fernández’s words. Of course, Catalina’s story is almost like a movie. Some moments surprised me, and the ending is genuinely chilling.

Thank you for reading.

Have a great day! 😘

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