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14,95 €
Pages: 202
Dimensions: 13 x 21 cm
In color: No
Rustic: Yes


Due to the imposition of his father who wanted to make a man of him, a beardless middle-class young man named Mario Vargas Llosa was sent to the Leoncio Prado Military College. There he came to know the abuse and violence, as well as the desperate sexuality of his fellow soldiers. Years later, he turned that experience into the novel that would discover him to the world: The city and the dogs. In this report, Sergio Vilela reconstructs the terrible adolescence that Vargas Llosa transformed into literature, and which also marked his political obsessions: authoritarianism and barbarism. The result is a story that is read with the fascination of the best novels, and that gives us the biographical keys of the most important live writer in the Spanish language.

Sergio Vilela tracked down with great efficiency, he located my stablemates, those of whom I was a dog and you love were my dogs. "He produced a model journalistic report that even for me was a revelation of things he didn't know about myself." Vargas Llosa, Lima Book Fair 2008.

I am very happy that at last the well-told story of when no one at the Military College of the city and the dogs imagined that the young Vargas Llosa, also known as Flaco, Poeta, or Bugs Bunny, is spread more widely, using his silent literary wisdom, he would invent a legendary past for the place. A formidable investigation by Sergio Vilela about the real world that is hidden behind that memorable great novel.

Cadet Vargas Llosa immerses us in the behind-the-scenes era, in the interiors, in the locations, and even more, in the flesh and blood beings that fed the mind of that young Mario Vargas Llosa.

Alberto Fuguet

The writer understood, upon entering the Leoncio Prado, that the only thing he should not do was stand out. That's why he tried to disappear into the crowd. At that time, Vargas Llosa acted without knowing it, with the defense tactic of the characters of chivalric novels: to be confused among the people to act from anonymity at the precise moment. He excelled in all instances of his life, except in the Military College, and it was because he knew it was better not to excel.

J. J. Armas Marcelo

The Cadet Vargas Llosa is a book that aims to explain, exonerate, redeem or defend an imprint that was woven in the narrated stories of The City and the Dogs. Finally, and as a corollary to the reading of this work, it could be pointed out that, despite many, Vargas Llosa did not write a novel against the Liceo Leoncio Prado, but rather, without perhaps intending to, built a legend about its losing heroes.

Gregorio Manzano


Sergio Vilela. Lima, 1979. Journalist and editor. He has been the editorial director of Grupo Planeta in Peru since 2005. He has been deputy editor of the Black Label magazine. He studied journalism at the Peruvian University of Applied Sciences (UPC) in Lima, where he later held the chair of Literary Journalism. His chronicles have been published in newspapers and magazines in Europe, the United States and Latin America, in media such as Paris Review, El País and Virginia Quarterly. He has been a fellow of the New Journalism Foundation directed by Gabriel García Márquez. In 2008, he was invited by this foundation to be part of the New Cronistas de Indias meeting, which brought together the thirty most representative non-fiction narrators in Latin America. He was recognized by the National Council of Youth of Peru for his work as a journalist. In collaboration with the writer Alonso Cueto, he wrote the script for the exhibition on Mario Vargas Llosa, entitled Freedom and Life, which has been presented in Paris, Mexico City, Stockholm, Guadalajara and Lima. He has participated in the chronicle anthology Crazy, bad and virtuous, and now writes The Last Secret of Machu Picchu.


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