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Edurne Portela

Edurne Portela (b 1974, Vizcaya, Spain) is an author, linguist and historian with a PhD in Latin American literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

After combining teaching with other academic posts, research and communication for 13 years, she is now a full-time author and writer. Portela contributes to such publications as El País, La Marea and El Correo.

She has published essays and non-fiction, including El eco de los disparos: cultura y memoria de la violencia which deals with society in the Basque provinces after the ETA separatist group gave up its armed struggle five years ago.

Published in 2017, her novel Mejor la ausencia follows the main character, Amaia, through her upbringing in a Basque industrial town during the 1980s and 1990s in an environment affected by political violence from the ETA, abuse by close relatives, deindustrialisation, the heroin epidemic and unemployment. This work won the Madrid booksellers’ prize for best novel in 2018.

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