Competition: Latin America & Caribbean
Eduardo Halfon was born in 1971 in Guatemala City. He moved to the United States with his family in 1981, went to school in South Florida, and then studied Industrial Engineering at North Carolina State University. Later, back in his native Guatemala, he was Literature Professor during eight years at Universidad Francisco Marroquín. Although bilingual, he chooses to write in Spanish.
Halfon has published ten books of fiction, including Esto no es una pipa, Saturno (Alfaguara 2003, Punto de Lectura 2007), De cabo roto (Littera Books 2003), El ángel literario (Anagrama 2004, Semifinalist of the Herralde Prize for Novel), Clases de hebreo (AMG 2008), Clases de dibujo (AMG 2009, XV Café Bretón y Bodegas Olarra Literary Prize), El boxeador polaco (Pre-Textos 2008), and La pirueta (Pre-Textos 2010, José María de Pereda Prize for Short Novel). His most recent book, Mañana nunca lo hablamos (Pre-Textos 2011), is the fictionalized story of his childhood, growing up in the midst of the Guatemalan violence of the 1970s, until his family’s departure in 1981, the day after his tenth birthday.
During his Guggenheim Fellowship, Halfon will be working on the narrative of his Polish grandfather’s experience in the Holocaust, already begun in his book El boxeador polaco (The Polish Boxer), a fragment of which can be read here.
In 2007, he was named one of the 39 best young Latin American writers by the Hay Festival of Bogotá.