Multiple Choice | Granta

  • Published: 04/08/2016
  • ISBN: 9781783782703
  • Granta Books
  • 112 pages

Multiple Choice

Alejandro Zambra

Reader, your life is full of choices. Some will bring you joy and others will bring you heartache. Will you choose to cheat (in life, the examination that follows) or will you choose to copy? Will you fall in love? If so, will you remember her name and the number of freckles on her back? Will you marry, divorce, annul? Will you leave your run-down neighbourhood, your long-suffering country and your family? Will you honour your dead, those you loved and those you didn’t? Will you have a child, will you regret it? Will you tell them you regret it? Will you, when all’s said and done, deserve a kick in the balls? Will you find, here, in this slender book, fictions that entertain and puzzle you? Fictions that reflect yourself back to you? Will you find yourself?

Relax, concentrate, dispel any anxious thoughts. Let the world around you settle and fade. Are you ready? Now turn over your papers, and begin.

This year I was very happy to discover Alejandro Zambra. His new book, Multiple Choice, brilliantly translated from the Spanish by Megan McDowell, manages to blend Oulipian poetry, funny-sad short stories and choose-your-own-advevnture

Joe Dunthorne, Best Books of 2016, Observer

To my mind, the best of what experimental fiction be

Taiye Selasi, Best Books of 2016, Observer

This is composition set in the key of fun - ironic, playful, sometimes bitter. The translation by Megan McDowell skims across the tricky terrain with grace and ease, capturing the comic absurdities and dark moments without any apparent linguistic stumble or pause... [Zambra has] a wonderfully seductive, ludic charm. Multiple Choice will be embraced by Zambra's devoted followers. Open-minded readers new to his quirky world could find it opening doors. Multiple doors perhaps


The Author

Alejandro Zambra was born in Santiago, Chile in 1975. He is the author of two books of poems, Bahía Inútil and Mudanza; a collection of essays, No leer; and three novels, Bonsái, which was awarded a Chilean Critics Award for best novel, The Private Lives of Trees, and Ways of Going Home, which was awarded the Altazor Prize, selected by The National Book Council as the best Chilean novel published during 2012, and won an English Pen Award. He was selected as one of Granta‘s Best of Young Spanish-Language Novelists and was elected to the Bogotá39 list.

More about the author →

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Essays & Memoir | Granta 159

Blue-Eyed Muggers

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‘At every protest, when it was time to yell at the cops, I remembered my father and felt a turbulent emotion.’

Memoir by Alejandro Zambra on his father and his son.

Fiction | Granta 134

Reading Comprehension: Text No. 2

Alejandro Zambra

‘Which of the following famous phrases best reflects the meaning of the text?’

Essays & Memoir | Granta 134

Searching for Pavese

Alejandro Zambra

‘Something’s gone awry with this article. My intention was to remember, in his birthplace, a writer I admire, and it’s clear that my admiration has waned.’