You come to the province for the 4th Meeting of the Reading Clubs of the province, what changes with this kind of public before other presentations?
First of all, I thank you for accepting me in your environment. It’s a very nice experience. I understand literature as communication between writer and reader and with book clubs that communication occurs more strongly, much more than in a book presentation.
What do you expect from this public, which has already been read with the work?
You don’t know. A new world is new to every reader. I hope you can tell me what feelings reading the book brought to you, if you understood the characters, if you liked the historical context…
It is strange that you have placed a new one in the territories which, although possessed by the Spanish Crown, have been for several years: How did you claim the frontiers of Louisiana?
There are many reasons. I always write to fans with whom I have some emotional bond. I was born in the Pyrenees, but I have also lived in the United States and have a relationship with the country. I continued to study North American literature, even today I would like to know something more about the world of Latin Americans, who seem to be only Apaches with western skins. I had a story about the role of Spain in the independence of the United States of America, each day I received more information and the geographical environment of the legendary lands of Mississippi fascinated me more and more. I began to understand the political and social environment of those who lived there when the Spanish arrived. For it was said to me. So I decided to learn more and write a novel in that place.
How was that society different from that which existed at the same time in Mexico or Cuba?
In a very different way. When Spain left Louisiana in 1803, Hispanics were only 5% of the total. The wide territory to which they arrived from other places, Germans, Dutch, English also, Mestizos … and many also freedmen under the Spanish law, which slaves allowed to buy freedom. It was a multicultural and multiracial society.
The novel shows an interracial love story, how was it in the 18th century?
It is a story of love, not difficult, but impossible. He went away from the white man with the American Indian pattern, which was what it was, but no one thought about it the other way around. That was an inappropriate love. I propose a love between the daughter of a French merchant and an American Indian, why not such a love? It was also the time when the Enlightenment was ending and with its desire for freedom it had reached the 19th century.
What did he want to receive the Planet Award for this novel?
Great honor. He had a special feeling because he wrote a historical novel, very thoughtful, very measured. I said to myself, why am I not going to introduce myself? My reward was the joy of my family. The story that was born from my head and heart, won the Planeta Prize, the most important thing in my life and the impulse to write;
Does the public appreciate these awards?
Certainly. It is the responsibility of publishers to provide fictional stories, so that readers can find stories that have their own punch, and contribute to this reward. On the other hand, the devotion of the readers in Planet Lake is curious. In Spain there are also award collectors who await the publication of the Planet Award every year, which has produced great successes in Spanish literature.