The Saint Perpetuus Club of Buenos Aires Kindle ¾

Sewn signatures printed on 125gsm acid free paper and bound by Atheneum Press in brown wibalin cloth stamped in gold with a silk ribbon marker and head and tailbands 300 copiesOut of print from the publisher's websiteHidden away in the pages of an old copy of Lives of the Saints in a strange second hand bookshop is a diary brimming with heresy and claims of supernatural powers When civil servant Miguel Ibañez stumbles across it he at first believes it to be the ravings of a mad man But what if it is true? What if the anonymous author has really learned the secrets of controlling time? Could Miguel acquire the same skills and thereby correct the incongruities in his own life? Trapped in a mediocre job at a forgotten Ministry his marriage falling apart Miguel desperately searches for hidden entries He is led on an increasingly frantic chase through the bookstores abandoned buildings and dark subways of Buenos Aires Miguel's obsession brings him to the doors of the Saint Perpetuus Club a secret society that holds the key to the salamanca the cave where the Devil grants all wishes for a price The deeper Miguel goes the he wonders whom he can trust His wife his friends his old philosophy professor? Perhaps they are all members of the Club? Is Miguel willing to risk his life even his immortal soul to uncover the secrets of The Saint Perpetuus Club of Buenos Aires? The Saint Perpetuus Club of Buenos Aires is a sewn hardback novel of 233 pages with silk ribbon marker head and tailbands and dw Limited to 300 copies ISBN 978 1 905784 16 5

10 thoughts on “The Saint Perpetuus Club of Buenos Aires

  1. says:

    “Colin Harrison is trying to do for New York what Raymond Chandler and James Ellroy have done for Los Angeles map the sinister underbelly of the city the nexus of greed and lust and ambition that metastasizes there and its dark spawn of larceny and murder” So wrote Michiko Kakutani in one of her New York Times book reviews Likewise Eric Stener Carlson is trying to do for Buenos Aires what those other writers have done for their own cities The Saint Perpetuus Club of Buenos Aires is a fast paced page turner Since in a very real sense this is not only an absolutely first rate work of literature but a mystery novel rather than say too much about plot I'll shift to a number of highlights a reader will encounter on their journey through the Argentine city that has been called The Paris of the South and The Queen of Silver Miguel Ibañez One The novel’s first person narrator is a young intellectual working in a suffocating government office job in order to support his wife Juliet and toddler son Miguelito Having abandoned his doctoral dissertation on Martin Heidegger Miguel feels frustrated and that’s understatement Oh what a quagmire Miguel is part of the Ministry of Parks Public Monuments and Green Areas where he’s just been handed the unenviable task of coordinating resources and proposing possible resolutions for one of the hottest hot potatoes in Buenos Aires Should city parks be locked up at night locking out the homeless a decision that would amount to nothing less than a death sentence for hundreds of the city's men and women? Miguel Ibañez Two – Our scholarly protagonist takes on the role of amateur detective when he discovers a most peculiar diary written by an anonymous author a diary written in a series of short books a diary claiming to teach the secrets of controlling time Astonishing Who would have suspected such a heretical diary written as a sort of marginalia in elegant flowing cursive would be found in of all places Alban Butler’s 1894 edition of Lives of the Saints? Ah to possess the power to control time what a colossal difference that would make in Miguel’s world All of a sudden the story accelerates into overdrive our main character is now a man obsessed Throwback Bookstore Miguel comes upon this unique copy of Lives of the Saints not in one of those modern bookselling chains with blaring hip hop music and foaming cappuccinos but in Bernardo’s Bookstore and Antiquary where white haired oldster Bernardo is forever reading Proust from behind the counter at the back of the store And Bernardo is joined by wife Bernardina the person squarely in charge along with an individual Miguel takes to be Bernardo’s retarded older brother a big lumbering man by the name of Edgardo who reminds Miguel of the four idiot sons in Horacio Quiroga’s The Decapitated Chicken all rolled into one Unending Rat Wheel Eric Stener Carlson depicts Miguel’s everyday slog at work and his emotionally wrenching home life in telling detail all with a touch of humor We get the feel for what it's really like to sit in that government office with self styled Eastern philosopherporno watching coworker Esteban and come home to beautiful wife Julieta the most amazing lover Miguel has ever known lucky man and son Miguelito who has started with a fever Although Miguel has a brilliant mind and background in philosophy turns out Julieta is among the wisest and most compassionate individuals man or woman a reader is likely to encounter in a lifetime of reading Nasty Narrator – As Miguel quickly learns the diary’s author claiming to be a saint is a bureaucrat from a family of bureaucrats going back generations “In my family we have always been bureaucrats and we will always be” And what is the highest value for this bureaucrat and self proclaimed saint? Believe it or not punctuality “As I said there’s no excuse for tardiness” And the diarist goes on to include quotes from Nietzsche to undergird his world view One need only scratch the surface to detect a cramped diabolical mind at work here Righteous Relative The diarist’s Great Uncle Teófilo worked for the Buenos Aires subway and left the narrator his apartment at the corner of Avenida Santa Fe and Colonel Diaz the apartment with the smallest window all the way at the top Teófilo’s admonition ‘I’ll be damned if you can’t show up to work on time’ became the diarist’s credo Curiously one of the intriguing parts of the novel is when Miguel explores the old abandoned apartment described in the diary Energy of the Panther – “There is some dark Power that flows beneath the streets of Buenos Aires And we must obey its ebbs and flows I call this force ‘Panther Energy' And all that Time flows towards the same subterranean pool And it’s stored there like cells in an ancient battery The Panther Energy lies waiting” Thus speaketh the diarist Miguel understands risks are involved but he could certainly use an infusion of energy in his life Buenos Aires Underground – Again from the diary Sabato was telling me as clear as day to look underneath the streets of Buenos Aires not above them Avenues and parks and plazas were only the start I had to scrape my fingernail against the immediate sense of things to see Buenos Aires as it actually was” The diarist includes direct references to Ernesto Sabato’s The Tunnel and for good reason the spirit of the great Argentine author’s work permeates its pages Actually Eric Stener Carlson’s The Saint Perpetuus Club of Buenos Aires shares a number of key themes with Sabato’s On Heroes and Tombs a sprawling novel concluding with its menacing “Report on the Blind” Likewise Sabato’s novel The Angel of Darkness detailing a network of evil that pervades the city Fiendish Mural In one of the stations in the Buenos Aires subway the diarist reports seeing a fragment of a mural on the other side of the subway tracks “An explosion of colours and forms Fire spitting out of the earth Snakes twisting An alligator thrashing and gone mad A coven of demonic creatures an orgy of condemned flesh” This description has a magnetic pull on Miguel – he conducts his own investigations down in the city subways Human Rights – In the concluding chapters of the novel Miguel Ibañez has a few surprises in store for a reader To find out what I mean here you will have to pick up a copy and read for yourself And to add to your reading pleasure it is worth pointing out this is a high quality Tartarus Press publication Eric Stener Carlson born 1969 has spent most of his life in Latin America Asia and Europe He is the author of novels and short stories mostly of the strange variety a la Robert Aickman as well as articles on Human Rights