The Anatomy of a Moment by Javier Cercas

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Given that today marks the thirtieth anniversary of the attempted coup d’état in Spain by Lt. Col. Tejero, I’m bringing to your attention the book Anatomy of a Moment, by Javier Cercas. Highly recommended. See  review at The Independent. Wikipedia 23-F.

Overview: In February 1981, just as Spain was finally leaving Francos’ dictatorship and during the first democratic vote in parliament for a new prime minister – Colonel Tejero and a band of right-wing soldiers burst into the Spanish parliament and began firing shots. Only three members of Congress defied the incursion and did not dive for cover,: Adolfo Suarez the then outgoing prime minister, who had steered the country away from the Franco era, Guttierez Mellado, a conservative general who had loyally served democracy, and Santiago Carillo, the head of the Communist Party, which had just been legalised.

In The Anatomy of a Moment, Cercas examines a key moment in Spanish history, just as he did so successfully in his Spanish Civil War novel, Soldiers of Salamis. This is the only coup ever to have been caught on film as it was happening, which, as Cercas says, ‘guaranteed both its reality and its unreality’. Every February a few seconds of the video are shown again and Spaniards congratulate themselves for standing up for democracy, but Cercas says that things were very quiet that afternoon and evening while all over Spain people stayed inside waiting for the coup to be defeated …. or to triumph. (Bloomsbury).

Anatomía de un instante de Javier Cercas

Teniendo en cuenta que hoy se cumple el trigésimo aniversario del intento de golpe de Estado protagonizado por el Teniente Coronel Tejero, traigo a su atención el libro Anatomía de un instante, de Javier Cercas. Altamente recomendado. Ver reseña en Qué leer. Wikipedia 23-F.

«Este libro es un ensayo en forma de crónica o una crónica en forma de ensayo. Este libro no es una ficción. Este libro es la anatomía de un instante: el instante en que Adolfo Suárez permaneció sentado en la tarde del 23 de febrero de 1981, mientras las balas de los golpistas zumbaban a su alrededor en el hemiciclo del Congreso de los Diputados y todos los demás parlamentarios -todos menos dos: el general Gutiérrez Mellado y Santiago Carrillo- buscaban refugio bajo sus escaños. Este libro es la crónica de ese gesto y la crónica de un golpe de estado y la crónica de unos años decisivos en la historia de España. Este libro es un libro inclasificable. Un libro único.» Javier Cercas. Random House Mondadori.