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20 A year of few books by Mirko Lauer

The 2020 books. It has not been so easy. Some appeared in the first three months, not knowing what would come next. After publishing it became heroic, and will continue to be. In the Peruvian case, electronic texts could not compensate for the absence of physicists, but they fulfilled their objective.

For a variety of reasons, the book from this period could be Children of the Plague, by Marcel velasquez (Taurus, physical and digital). Very timely book, more informative than comforting, and in the midst of the incessant tragedy, a very good read. It is in local bookstores and also on Amazon, where it is doing well.

A work that competes with Hijos in terms of topicality and relevance is Alimentos del Perú, by Elmo León (USMP), an extensive work on nutrition and gastronomy, a topic made controversial by the pandemic and its aftermath. More and more people are looking for alternative cures, and health in food.

A notable performance of the year was the reissue (in physical form) that he directed Carlos Alzamora from New York of his diplomatic memoirs Half a century around the world. Although it does not touch on the pandemic, the book is remarkably topical, perhaps because confined readers have been searching for stories. This is important and fun.

Abelardo Oquendo would never have allowed it, but his friends have rescued a valuable posthumous collection. Literary criticism as creation (Alejandro Susti, ed., PUCP, physical and digital) is a delight of short texts, all preceded by four friendly testimonies. It effectively reveals an Oquendo that it was never easy to meet.

Among the heroic tasks of the year is that Arturo Higa has refloated his publishing house Álbum del Universo Bakterial, beautiful physical poems in the middle of the pandemic. From July to December, five books, the last one presented by Zoom a few hours ago. The list:

Alejandra del Valle, Double Star. Jerónimo Pimentel, North of the rivers of the future. Mario Montalbetti, Meditating Ape (first Peruvian edition). Andrés Hare, Black stone / Litter. Oswaldo Chanove, A domestic challenge to infinity.

In advance this column misses the lagged launches of the Christmas campaign. Books for the summer, or simply that the ongoing crisis has delayed. Arguments for approaching bookstores, open or virtual, and digital fairs.

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