An Ideal Presence
Fern Books Llc
OverviewIn 2015, the Argentinian novelist Eduardo Berti spent several weeks in a “medico-literary” residency at the University Hospital Centre in Rouen, France, observing and conversing with the staff and volunteers of its palliative care department. From that experience he created this series of lightly fictionalized testimonials from nurses, nursing aides, doctors, administrators, porters, volunteer musicians, and the other people who make the unit tick. The result is a distinctly intimate and often poignant portrait of sickness and care, and unflinching look at death through the eyes of the people who work with it every day—but also a profound reflection on what it means to be alive.
Author BioEduardo Berti, born in Buenos Aires in 1964, is the author of a vast body of work that includes novels, stories, music writing, and various unclassifiable books. He has translated authors such as Gustave Flaubert, Jane Austen, and Marguerite Yourcenar into Spanish, and is the editor of a Spanish edition of Henry James’s complete stories. A member of the OuLiPo since 2014, he lives in Bordeaux.
Daniel Levin Becker, born in Chicago in 1984, is the author of Many Subtle Channels: In Praise of Potential Literature and the translator of, among others, Georges Perec’s La Boutique Obscure. He has been a member of the OuLiPo since 2009.