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Meet an Author: Jordi Punti, Catalan’s international author

Jordi Punti blog post

Jordi Puntí was born in 1967 and lives in Barcelona. He writes in Catalan and has published two books of short stories: Pell d’armadillo (Armadillo Skin) (1998) and Animals tristos (Sad Animals) (2002). In 2010 he published his first novel, Lost Luggage, which is reviewed below. His most recent book is Els castellans (2011), a memoir about the daily life in a Catalan industrial town in the 1970s, focusing on the relationship between Catalan kids and the immigrants arrived from Spain.

Books available at The Bookworm:

Lost Luggage (2010)

Event at The Bookworm Beijing:

Thursday, March 17, 8 pm: Literary Europe Live, with Owen Martell, Undine Radzeviciute, Nora Wagener; moderated by Alexandra Buchler

Opening Line of Lost Luggage

We have the same memory.

Lost Luggage review, by Laurie O’Donnell

Lost Luggage

Jordi Puntí’s first novel is Maletes perdudes (Lost Luggage), which received the National Critics’ Award, El Llibreter Award (booksellers prize), and the prestigious Lletra d’Or. The book has been translated into 16 languages.

This is a very different story. Four men all with the same name — Christopher, Christophe, Christof and Cristòfol — born in different European countries, have four different mothers yet share the same father, Gabriel Delacruz. They haven’t seen their father since early childhood and have only recently learned about the existence of their half-brothers.

The four Christophers, who hail from Frankfurt, Paris, London, and Barcelona, eventually meet and decide to try to find Gabriel, who has been missing for more than a year. They are all deeply affected by the same man, and share joyful memories of love and painful memories of absence. Slowly, their interwoven stories are unveiled, as is the story of their father, a truck driver who operated out of Franco’s Spain and smuggled people out.

The novel is a crazy concept, but it works very well. This is a story about finding the geography of belonging and the people who connect us to ourselves and help us find meaning to our lives. The story is personal, life from many angles. There is a hunger in the sharing and a need to be heard and a need to be wanted. The project of finding their father helps the brothers discover the fullness of their lives; it is hilarious and loving and real.

Praise for Lost Luggage:

“Punti also takes time for forays into the colorful lives of minor characters; while some of those detours feel too long, they impart narrative richness. The result is a mostly successful experiment in perspective, made lively by Punti’s extensive knowledge of the landscapes of Europe.” — Publishers Weekly

“A funny, moving and poignant exploration of identity, home, family and freedom.” — The Express

Lost Luggage is an ingenious creation, plotted with lovely patterns and symmetries. It is alert to the sheer untidiness of life and filled with strange connections between public events and private destinies.” — Colm Toibin

Jordi Punti is an author participating at the 2016 Bookworm Literary Festival. To read about other participating authors, please see our Meet an Author series.

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