Powerhouse Spanish Literary Agent Remembered

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The New Yorker has a retrospective on Carmen Balcells, a Spanish literary agent who brought writers like Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Mario Vargas Llosa, and Jorge Luis Borges to international fame. Balcells passed away last week at the age of 85.

Balcells wasn’t just behind the books being written, she was actually in them—sometimes romanticized, sometimes villainized, but often present, one way or another. “She took care of us, she spoiled us, she quarrelled with us, she yanked our ears,” Mario Vargas Llosa wrote in a recent homage.


Kelly Lynn Thomas reads, writes, and sometimes sews in Pittsburgh, PA. Her creative work has appeared in Sou’wester, Thin Air Magazine, Heavy Feather Review, metazen, and others, and she received her MFA in Creative Writing from Chatham University. She is hopelessly obsessed with Star Wars and can always be found with a large mug of tea. She also runs the very small Wild Age Press. Read more at kellylynnthomas.com. More from this author →