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Guillermo Cotto-Thorner, translated from the Spanish by J. Bret Maney

Guillermo Cotto-Thorner was born in Puerto Rico in 1916 and moved to New York in 1938. His first novel, Trópico en Manhattan, was published in 1951. Cotto-Thorner ministered to the Fort Washington Heights Presbyterian Church in New York City and remained an active and progressive voice in the Hispanic community until his death in 1983. He published a second novel, Gambetta, in 1971.

J. Bret Maney is a doctoral candidate in the Program in Comparative Literature and Literary Theory at the University of Pennsylvania. He holds an M.A. in French from the Université de Paris 7 - Denis Diderot. An earlier version of this translation was awarded the Ezra Pound Prize for Literary Translation (2012).

the first 3 chapters from Manhattan Tropics

On that Saturday morning Antonio was hurriedly preparing to meet a friend who was arriving from Puerto Rico. It had rained all night and the new day was dark, damp, sticky, and insufferable. A ray of light nonetheless shone through the gloomy weather—the prospect of welcoming a beloved countryman with open arms.

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The Brooklyn Rail

APRIL 2020

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