A Little Lumpen Novelita by Roberto Bolaño
Published in Spain just before Bolano’s death, A Little Lumpen Novelita percolates with a fierce and tender love of women“Now I am a mother and a married woman, but not long ago I led a life of crime”: so Bianca begins her tale of growing up the hard way in Rome. Orphaned overnight as a teenager―“our parents died in a car crash on their first vacation without us”―she drops out of school, gets a crappy job, and drifts into bad company. Her younger brother brings home two petty criminals who need a place to stay. As the four of them share the family apartment and plot a strange crime, Bianca learns how low she can fall. Electric, tense with foreboding, and written in jagged, propulsive chapters, A Little Lumpen Novelita delivers a surprising, fractured fable of seizing control of one’s fate.