'Havana's ravishing decay has never been more beautifully rendered. This is a strange and wonderfully dreamy book.' Sunday Telegraph
In his first novel since the memorable Thine Is the Kingdom, Abilio Est-vez conjures up the melancholy beauty of contemporary Havana with passion and eloquence in a story about a trio of misfits. Victorio, a lonely middle-aged homosexual, is about to be evicted from his room in a dilapidated mansion that is soon to be demolished. He quits his job, burns most of his possessions and becomes a vagrant. Wandering the streets of the city, he meets two people who are to change his life: Salma, a young prostitute, who befriends him, and Don Fuco, an elderly eccentric, who lives in a ruined theatre, where Victorio and Salma are invited to live, and who performs as a clown and a musician, bringing magic and exuberance into the pinched lives of his compatriots. Distant Palaces is a novel about human resilience and joy in the face of crushing odds. It also confirms Abilio Est-vez as one of Latin America's most talented and inventive novelists.
“Possibly the most outstanding novel that Latin American literature has produced since the Sixties”
“A novel that defends beauty as the soul of reason, dignity and happiness”