Libro de las preguntas (Book of Questions)

Pablo Neruda
Illustrations by Isidro Ferrer
Commentary by Herrín Hidalgo

ISBN: 978-84-934038-7-3
Books for Children Collection, number 14 / Spanish edition / 1st edition, 2nd reprint: April 2014 / 18,5 x 23 cm / 180 pages / three-tone illustrations / hardcover with dust jacket / printed at Brizzolis, Madrid, Spain

The Chilean poet Neruda, who dedicated poems to all the things in the world, left this book unpublished. Full of humour and mystery, it appeared only after the poet’s death in 1973. Isidro Ferrer has turned it into a little theatre half way between Lorca´s La Barraca and Calder´s Circus.

Throughout his life, Pablo Neruda wrote an infinite number of poems dedicated to every person, animal, mineral, and thing that inhabits the universe. After his death, many other poems continued to appear and were turned into many other books, incase someone was yet to be serenaded. Out of all the books, this Book of Questions is the most exceptional. It was first published in Argentina by the publishing house Losada in 1974; in Spain, the first edition was produced by Seix Barral in 1977.

According to some commentators, this book is a type of poetic testament, where the  astonished gaze of a child coexists with that of a wise man. According to others, it signifies the poet’s re-encounter with some early interests: the “lunerías” of Lorca, the “greguerías” of Ramón, and the avant-garde’s absurdities.

Isidro Ferrer, illustrator of this edition of Book of Questions, creates for adults and children alike. He works mostly for himself, which is the best way to go about things. Instead of proposing impossible answers to impossible questions, he has pursued the impossible maxim, which is to transform a book of poems into a theatre play halfway between Lorca’s La Barraca and Calder’s circus. Neruda plays the role of Neruda, as well as the Captain of  Yellow Submarine, while Isidro plays all the other roles.

VAT included