La escala de los mapas
La escala de los mapas

The Maps Scale

La escala de los mapas

Sergio Prim is a staid and solitary middle-aged man who finds himself suddenly in love. A geographer by trade, but with a broken radar when it comes to navigating human relationships, he is thrown into a psuchological crisis by the romantic advances of Brezo Varela, a lively young woman who shares his profession. Haunted by a series of hallucinations, Prim attempts to seek refuge by immersing himself in an obsessive metaphysical quest: he will protect himself and his lover by mapping the way to a place in which love never results in disillusionment. The result is an intimate and mercilessly revealing self-examination of a meager and fearful life challegend by desire.

«What is astonishing about this novel is the originality of its narrative strategies in harmony with the rhythm of its prose» (Carmen Martín Gaite).

«A fable of love-laid-waste, an almost scientific story of the anguish of existence, a profoundly and deliberately distorted image of perverse reality, its space and time, a tragedy replete with tenderness and humor» (Abc).

«Gopegui is one of our most outstanding young names (in Spanish literature)» (El País).

«One of the best -if not the best- writers of her generation» (El Mundo).

SERIESNarrativas hispánicas


  • France (Actes Sud)
  • Italy (Le Lettere)
  • The Netherlands (De Bezige Bij)
  • Finland (Andalusialainen Koira)
  • USA (City Lights Books)
Belén Gopegui

Belén Gopegui

Belén Gopegui was born in Madrid in October 1963. In 1992 she published the novel La escala de los mapas, which had an extraordinary impact: “An overwhelmingly powerful work… the stunning thing about this novel is the originality of its narrative strategy in full concordance with the rhythm of its prose” (Carmen Martín Gaite). After her fascinating second novel, Tocarnos la cara (1995), with the third, La conquista del aire (1998), she took a definitive step forward: “A perfect novel” (Francisco Umbral). In 2001 she wrote her fourth novel, Lo real: “Belén Gopegui is the writer who produces the best and wisest example of the novel as an instrument of investigation, reflection and political analysis, in the widest possible sense: that relating to the question of the polis” (Ignacio Echevarría, El País). Her fifth novel was El lado frío de la almohada:“The only surprise provided by each new novel by Belén Gopegui is not its quality —something that we can take for granted— but finding out the way she has succeeded” (Rafael Conte, El País). And, in 2007, she wrote her sixth novel, El padre de Blancanieves: “A serious and important work that deserves to be read, because, aside from being interesting because of the plot that sustains it, it urges a reflection on reality”. (Santos Sanz Villanueva, El Cultural); “The reader is seduced by a prose that aims to show reality in ways that are similar to certain works by Godard or through the films of Kluge, Fassbinder, etc.” (Joaquín Arnáiz, La Razón); “With this novel, she reaches her most ambitious heights” (Rafael Conte, El País). Her novels have been translated into Chinese, French, Italian, Turkish, German, Portuguese, Polish, Finnish, Serbian and Dutch.