Writer and journalist Juan Villoro speaks during a previous conference in Mexico City.
BY RICARDO CASTILLO
Renowned Mexican writer Juan Villoro presented his first book translated into English at the San Miguel Writers’ Conference and Literary Festival.
Speaking in English to several hundred English speaking writers gathered for the conference and participation in the literary workshops, Villoro introduced his novel “The Guilty,” printed by British publishing house Stories and translated by Kimi Traube.
Villoro could not hide his joy and pride at having his first book published in English.
“This book got the attention of the editors. It’s something magnificent to have a book translated into another language and put on sale.”
In “The Guilty,” or “Los Culpables,” as it is called in Spanish, Villoro tries to reflect the identity of Mexicans, which was what grabbed the attention of the publishing house, he said.
This was the second time Juan Villoro participated in a San Miguel Writers’ Conference in which other editions of his novels and essays were for sale at the Literary Festival’s bookstore.
Villoro, last year, became part of the Literary Sala, which organizes the conference, as his novel “The Wild Book,” was distributed among San Miguel de Allende children as part of the reading promotion programs sponsored with monies earned from the non-profit organization.
“The Wild Book,” was selected as part of the reading program because it tells the story of a boy who is accidentally left by his mother under the care of a bibliophile uncle. Instead of having a summer vacation, the character goes on to discover the pleasure of reading under the guidance of his uncle, a disgusting genius who eats with his mouth open.
For this book, Villoro visited SMA rural hamlets to talk to the kids who had read “The Wild Book.”
Villoro has published 16 books, and one of his better sellers is titled “God Is Round,” in which he wrote about perhaps the most popular sport in the world, soccer.