4 July 2009

Manuel Rivas, Butterfly’s Tongue, 1995

Three short stories that have the common theme of young Spanish men or boys viewing the adult world from the outside. Two of the stories, ‘Saxophone in the Mist’ and ‘Carmiña’ revolve around first encounters with music and sex, though particularly good is ‘Butterfly’s Tongue’, about a young schoolboy who admires his old teacher with whom he shares a love of nature, and yet for reasons of the Spanish Civil War is encouraged by his father to turn against him. This trio was also made into a film which is certainly worth seeking out. Rivas is a delicately observant writer.  PY


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