News of a Kidnapping (Penguin Great Books of the 20th Century)

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9780140269444: News of a Kidnapping (Penguin Great Books of the 20th Century)

Gabriel García Márquez's News of a Kidnapping is a powerful retelling of actual events from a turbulent period of Colombian history.

'She looked over her shoulder before getting into the car to be sure no one was following her'

Pablo Escobar: billionaire drugs baron, ruthless manipulator brutal killer and jefe of the infamous Madellín cartel. A man whose importance in the international drug trade and renown for his charitable work among the poor brought him influence and power in his home country of Colombia, and the unwanted attention of the American courts.

Terrified of the new Colombian President's determination to extradite him to America, Escobar found the best bargaining tools he could find: hostages.

In the winter of 1990, ten relatives of Colombian politicians, mostly women, were abducted and held hostage as Escobar attempted to strong-arm the government into blocking his extradition. Two died, the rest survived, and from their harrowing stories Márquez retells, with vivid clarity, the terror and uncertainty of those dark an volatile months.

'Reads with an urgency which belongs to the finest fiction. I have never read anything which gave a better sense of the way Colombia was in worst times' Daily Telegraph

'Compellingly readable. A book with all the panache of Márquez's fiction, hitting home rather harder' Sunday Times

'A piece of remarkable investigative journalism made all the more brilliant by the author's talent for magical storytelling' Financial Times

As one of the pioneers of magic realism and perhaps the most prominent voice of Latin American literature, Gabriel García Márquez has received international recognition for his novels, works of non-fiction and collections of short stories. Those published in translation by Penguin include Autumn of the Patriarch, Bon Voyage Mr. President, Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Collected Stories, The General in his Labyrinth, In Evil Hour, Innocent Eréndira and Other Stories, Leaf Storm, Living to Tell the Tale, Love in the Time of Cholera, Memories of My Melancholy Whores, No-one Writes to the Colonel, Of Love and Other Demons, The Story of a Shipwrecked Sailor and Strange Pilgrims.

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Product Description:

This astonishing book by the Nobel laureate Gabriel Garcí a Má rquez chronicles the 1990 kidnappings of ten Colombian men and women--all but one a journalist--by the Medellí n drug boss Pablo Escobar. The carefully orchestrated abductions were Escobar's attempt to extort from the government its assurance that he, and other narcotics traffickers, would not be extradited to the United States if they were to surrender.
From the highest corridors of government to the domain of the ruthle drug cartels, we watch the unfolding of a bizarre drama replete with fascinating characters: Cé sar Gaviria, the nation's cool and secretive president; Diana Turbay, a famous television journalist and magazine editor; three indomitable women who are imprisoned for miserable months in a small room with a light perpetually on; an eighty-two-year-old priest with a mission to bring the regime and the cartel to the negotiating table; and Escobar himself, the legendary drug baron who changes his bodyguards daily and maintains a private zoo with giraffes and hippos from Africa.
All of this takes place in a country where presidential candidates and cabinet officers are routinely assassinated; where police go into the Medellí n slums to murder boys they think may be working for Escobar; but where brave and honest citizens are trying desperately to make democracy survive.
An international best-seller, "News of a Kidnapping" combines journalistic tenacity with the breathtaking language and perception that distinguish the writings of Gabriel Garcí a Má rquez. It draws us into a world that, like some phantasmagorical setting in a great Garcí a Má r novel, we can scarcely believe exists--but that continually shocks us with its cold, hard reality.

Product Description:

Returning to his days as a reporter for "El Spectator", Gabriel Garcia Marquez chronicles, with consummate skill, the period in late 1990 when Colombian security forces mounted a nationwide manhunt for Pablo Escobar, the ruthless and elusive head of the Medellin drug cartel.

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