Nobel Laureate Gabriel Garcia Marquez, author of One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera, tells a powerful tale of poverty and undying hope in his moving novel No One Writes to the Colonel.
'The Colonel took the top off the coffee can and saw that there was only one spoonful left'
Fridays are different. Every other day of the week, the Colonel and his ailing wife fight a constant battle against poverty and monotony, scraping together the dregs of their savings for the food and medicine that keeps them alive. But on Fridays the postman comes - and that sets a fleeting wave of hope rushing through the Colonel's ageing heart.
For fifteen years he's watched the mail launch come into harbour, hoping he'll be handed an envelope containing the army pension promised to him all those years ago. Whilst he waits for the cheque, his hopes are pinned on his prize bird and the upcoming cockfighting season. But until then the bird - like the Colonel and his wife - must somehow be fed. . .
'Marquez writes in this lyrical, magical language that no one else can do' Salman Rushie
'Masterly. He dazzles us with powerful effect' New Statesman
'One of this century's most evocative writers' Anne Tyler