ISBN-10: 1942658664
ISBN-13: 9781942658665
Publisher: Bellevue Literary Press
Publish Date: 08/27/2019
Dimensions: 7.40" L, 5.00" W, 0.70" H

From the Shadows

Translator: Thomas Bunstead
Translator: Daniel Hahn


Price: $16.99


Publishers Weekly “Top 10 Books of the Year” selection

From one of Spain’s most original authors comes a wild, absurdist story about a lonely man’s misguided attempts to connect

Laid off from his job, Damián Lobo obsessively imagines himself as a celebrity being interviewed on TV. After committing an act of petty theft at an antiques market, he finds himself trapped inside a wardrobe and delivered to the seemingly idyllic home of a husband, wife, and their internet-addicted teenage daughter. There, he sneaks from the shadows to serve as an invisible butler, becoming deeply and disastrously involved with his unknowing host family. Every thread of the plot is ingeniously tied together, creating a potent admixture of parable, love story, and thriller. Millás masterfully reveals the everyday as innately surreal as he renders the unbelievable tangible and the trivial fantastical, and full of dark humor.

Read More

Praise for From the Shadows

Publishers Weekly "Top 10 Books of the Year" selection
Thrillist "Best Books of the Year" selection
World Literature Today "Notable Translations of the Year" selection
Asymptote Book Club selection
New York Public Library "Contemporary Classics Book Discussion" selection
Big Other Book Award Finalist

"Begins as entertaining slapstick, subtly metamorphoses into fable. . . . As [the narrator's] vivid imaginary world fuses with reality this deceptively ethereal novel advances toward a dark and startling finale." –Wall Street Journal

"Spectacularly surreal and cerebral. . . . [From the Shadows] carves a labyrinthine path through a mind withstanding both physical and mental confinements, and the language, rife with darkness and comedy, traces the fine walls of worlds both real and imagined with Kafkaesque soliloquy." –Asymptote Journal

A seductive narrator, brisk dialogue, and a unique claustrophobic setting contribute to a distinctive blend of Kafka's surrealism and Pirandello's absurdism. . . . A quick, riveting read." –World Literature Today

"The compact, surreal story . . . is uproarious and unnerving in equal measure, and is far too riveting to put down." –Thrillist

"Hilarious and unique." –Crime Reads

"Equal parts psychotic, suspenseful, and tenderly funny. . . . This novel forever changed how I feel when I'm home alone." –

"Incredibly strange, truly bizarre–one of the most original stories. . . . Impossible to put down." –Shelf Unbound

"An entertainingly presented look at social isolation and dependency." –Complete Review

"A fable of survival in a consumerist society." –Seattle Review of Books

"[From the Shadows is] about alienation, loneliness, voyeurism, and the power of fantasy to transform claustrophobic, humdrum lives. . . . [It] pays tribute to a very Spanish tradition, embodied by, among others, surrealists like Luis Buñuel [whose] 1962 film, The Exterminating Angel, [is] another claustrophobic allegory that turns middle-class comfort into a desert island." –Public Books

"Part surreal comedy, part dark parable, Millás's wild work brings readers face to face with the mundane facets of middle-class suburban life. . . . A page-turner of the strangest order, Millás's debut stuns and entrances. It's impossible to put down." –Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"Spectacularly bizarre. . . . A Kafkaesque story about transformation and our collective human desire to connect with one another." –Kirkus Reviews

"A compelling stew of comedy, philosophy, and even tragedy, From the Shadows maintains a light touch, even as sinister undertones bubble underneath." –Foreword Reviews

"A penetrating parable of suburban family life. . . . Millás tells a compelling story of human connection in a way that is sometimes crude but also darkly funny, insightful and ultimately surprising." –Shelf Awareness for Readers

More Praise for Juan José Millás

Publishers Weekly "Writer to Watch"

"One of Spain's most original and important authors . . . [Millás holds] down a place in the country's pantheon of living literary greats–on a par with Javier Marías or Almudena Grandes, and comparable to the place Ian McEwan or Hilary Mantel occupy in the United Kingdom." –Public Books

"The narrative of Juan José Millás, our literary Buster Keaton, is inimitable and unique." –La Vanguardia

"Millás makes the incredulous believable." –World Literature Today

More Reviews


ISBN-10: 1942658664
ISBN-13: 9781942658665
Publisher: Bellevue Literary Press
Publish Date: 08/27/2019
Dimensions: 7.40" L, 5.00" W, 0.70" H
Skip to content