The poet Luis García Montero remembers Almudena Grandes, his life partner | Today for Today | Interview

Luis García Montero (Granada, 1958), poet, narrator, essayist and professor of Spanish Literature at the University of Granada, was a member of the Communist Party of Spain (PCE) from a very young age and since its founding in Izquierda Unida. In July 2018, he was appointed director of the Cervantes Institute.

This Wednesday he sits in the main study of the SER with José Luis Sastre to remember the author Almudena Grandes, his recently deceased life partner.

The last goodbye to Almudena

Family, friends and personalities from politics and culture said their last goodbye to the writer, who died last Saturday, November 27 at the age of 61 as a result of cancer. All of them recognized his literary career.

“A woman clearly committed to the word, also to our memory, the collective memory, and also committed to her country, because from her dimension and her intellectual contribution she has made our country a better country,” the Prime Minister said. , Pedro Sánchez, also present at the funeral.

A street in Madrid and the city’s favorite daughter

The Madrid writer will name a street in Madrid, after being approved in a plenary session of the city with the votes in favor of all groups except for Vox.

The City Council celebrates this Wednesday an extraordinary plenary session in which the Government of the PP and Cs, headed by José Luis Martínez-Almeida, will achieve the approval of the 2022 budgets from the hand of the Mixed Group formed by councilors related to Manuela Carmena, after that Vox, preferred partner of the Executive, refused to support the accounts.

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Among the measures that the Mixed Group has demanded was to name the recently deceased writer Almudena Grandes the city’s favorite daughter or that municipal buses be free when there are high levels of pollution.

The mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez-Almeida (PP), has said that he will like the appointment of Almudena Grandes as the city’s favorite daughter “more or less”, as he already “demonstrated” with his vote in the municipal plenary session, but he has defended that this could not be an “obstacle” to reaching a budget agreement.

Chamberilera at heart

Madrileña del 60, Almudena Grandes became known in 1989 with The ages of Lulu, a work that won the Erotic Novel Award La Sonrisa Vertical, at the Tusquets publishing house, and which received unanimous applause from critics and the public. She followed I will call you friday and went Malena is a tango name, her third novel, the one that established her as one of the great writers of Spanish literature.

Atlas of human geography, Difficult airs, Cardboard castles, The frozen heart Y Kisses on bread, along with the volumes of short stories Female models Y Way stations, made it one of the most established names and with the greatest international projection in contemporary Spanish literature.

The frozen heart it was a turning point in his career. From there he was fully introduced to the Episodes of an Endless War, a literary project that, following the model of Benito Pérez Galdós in his Episodes, wanted to tell the story of those who lost the Civil War, interspersing historical facts with fictionalized events. Republican, feminist and committed to democratic values ​​and the memory of the country, Almudena Grandes won numerous awards, such as the Vertical Smile Award, the Lara Foundation Award, the Madrid Booksellers Award and the Seville Award, the Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, the Rapallo Carige and the Prix Mediterranée.

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Grandes also almost finished a novel that will see the light posthumously, almost certainly sometime next year 2022.

This recognition comes three days after the death of the writer, 2018 National Narrative Prize, who always boasted of the benefits of the capital and valued the virtues of the Town and Court, one more protagonist in all her novels.

“When I was little, what I liked the most in the world was to come with my mother to shop in the Center. I lived next to the Bilbao roundabout, my paternal grandparents on Fuencarral street, my paternal ones in Lope de Vega, in front of the Trinitarias … my whole life was spent in the Centro district, but for me the center was a heart with Puerta del Sol, Calle Mayor, Calle Arenal, Gran Vía and Plaza Mayor, “he said.

It was in 2018, during the reading of the proclamation of the San Isidro festivities, where Grandes, married to the poet Luis García Montero, made clear her love and defense of the city of Madrid with the reading of a clear tribute to the city that it she saw her being born, growing up and becoming a writer.

“Like a generous and generous fairy godmother, Madrid gives her children two gifts at the moment of their birth. One is water, the incomparable delight of drinking directly from the tap. The other is anonymity. Because in this commoner town, what he is proud of his condition as much or more than other of his old and aristocratic coats of arms, nobody is more than nobody “, Grandes began from the balcony of the House of the Villa, in the homonymous square.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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