At a New Year’s Eve party, a dead woman turns up alive again, after passing through a mysterious post-mortem way station located on another planet, and much to the disbelief of her old flame, who interprets the night’s events with the help of his reading of Kafka. A priest is sent by the Vatican to investigate a strange development in the American cattle market: a breed of cows identical in all physical respects to human women. A man leaves his wife and flees to the north of Spain, where he meets a sickly woman in an empty café, introduces himself as Jorge Walser, and makes plans with her to disappear. Aboard a trans-atlantic cruise, a door-to-door vacuum salesman bumps into a woman who appears to be Nastassja Kinski, and they swap tall tales as the ship floats them asymptotically toward world’s end. Christ turns out to be a girl who fronts a punk band. The words of such writers as Beckett, Walser, Chekhov, Gombrowicz, Bolaño, Kafka, Blanchot, and Borges are characters in themselves.
The Irish Sea is a novel masquerading as a book of short stories. A meditation on the paradox of nostalgia, which always seems to pine for what never was. A fevered search for order through writing, of truth through literature, of the nodal point where life and literature intersect. A strange personal gallery curated by a razor-sharp reader and his other, unknown self.
Carlos Maleno was born on October 4, 1977, in Almería, Spain, where he resides still, having lived for a time in Madrid, where he studied Economics. He has contributed to the literary reviews Quimera and La bolsa de pipas, and is the author of two novels, The Irish Sea (2014)―winner of the Premio Argaria for best narrative work―and The Endless Rose (2015), both published by Editorial Sloper. He is a passionate reader of Roberto Bolaño, Michel Houellebecq, Rodrgio Rey Rosa, and Enrique Vila-Matas. He works as an international sales broker at a produce company.