by Lorea Canales
Published by AmazonCrossing, February 2016
Marta is a 26 year-old from the upper crust of Mexican society. She seems to have it all: beauty, wealth, and an aristocratic name. Yet she feels empty. With the death of her adoptive mother, Marta loses her connection to the world against which she had always rebelled. Adding insult to injury, her father remarries only six months after her mother’s death, and her biological mother is a stranger who cannot meet Marta’s expectations. And love? For Marta, love is defined by deceit and disappointment. Glamorous and dazed, Marta runs away from and then returns to her past, inhabiting the outskirts of other people’s worlds.
Lorea Canales weaves a complex web about contemporary Mexico. Becoming Marta grabs you from the start and never lets up, speeding along through its seductive settings: Pacific coast beach houses, Manhattan’s high-end art scene, and exclusive enclaves in Mexico City.
Becoming Marta presents an x-ray of the fluctuating relationships in the highest stratum of today’s Mexico. In the tradition of Thackeray, Easton Ellis, Salvador Novo, and Jorge Ibarguengoitia, it embodies the fears and tensions of upper-class youth, to frame a smart and funny novel.
Lorea Canales is part of a new generation of global writers. Her novel Becoming Marta was named one of the best books of the year by Reforma, Mexico City's largest newspaper, when it was published in Spanish as Apenas Marta (Random House).
Ms. Canales earned a Master's in Law from Georgetown University in 1995, then worked in antitrust and electorate law in Washington, DC and Mexico before joining Reforma as a legal correspondent in 1997.
Ms. Canales taught law at ITAM University in Mexico City in 2000. That same year, she moved to New York in order to cover news stories, 9/11 among them, for magazines and newspapers in Mexico. She has been published in prestigious Latin American publications, including El Universal, Cambio, and Travesias.
In 2010, Ms. Canales completed a Master's in Fine Arts from New York University. Her translation of Carol Ann Duffy's poems will be published in Argentina by Bajo la Luna.
"Canales builds up the possibility to broaden the concept of literary entertainment amongst us."
- El Angel, REFORMA
"A scene so crude and raw that becomes palpable. These are the authors that make it possible to smell blood."
- Jorge F. Hernandez
"As with many great works, writing that originates from the dead, in this case the character of Martita, designs a reality that is not what it seems. With a subtle knowledge of a world, that in another writer would be false, Lorea Canales gives us a first novel that blends contemporary Mexican narrative with world literature." - "Mario Bellatin, author of Salon de Belleza and other novels