A Selection of International Children's and Youth Literature

Spanish / Colombia

Oki. Tripulante de terremotos
(Oki. Earthquake crew member)

Quezadas, Juan Carlos (text)
Bogotá: Norma, 2014. – 221 p.
(Series: Zona libre)
ISBN 978-958-45-4854-2

Hypochondria – Literature – Fiction – Reality – Storytelling

This book resembles a maze structure with many different levels and doors – including trap doors –, which keep opening up unto ever new, unknown rooms. They are stories within stories within stories... – a Russian doll between book covers, which opens up like a Kinder surprise, layer after layer. It is impossible to sum up the plot in a few lines; but this much can be said: Oki Tomo, the protagonist and first-person-narrator, is a hypochondriac young Japanese man who spends his time obsessively imagining all possible fatal diseases and catastrophes – which means he has a strong affinity for storytelling and thus for books. The quest for a book vanished from a library leads him to Lisbon, where he does not find what he is looking for, but finds what he had not been looking for. Juan Carlos Quezadas masterfully explores the spectrum of literary possibilities and intertextual references. “Oki” was awarded the Norma Award for Children’s and Young Adult Literature, and will undoubtedly captivate the imagination of experienced adolescent and adult readers. (Age: 15+)