Uncertain Glory by Joan Sales (Translated by Peter Bush) - review by Michael Eaude

Michael Eaude

Beyond Hemingway

Uncertain Glory


MacLehose Press 457pp £20

Uncertain Glory focuses on the most significant period in Catalonia’s 20th-century history, the Spanish Civil War. The novel describes the journey of four young people, from ‘the uncertain glory of an April day’, 14 April 1931, when the republic was proclaimed with flags, barricades and hope, to the desolation of the inglorious collapse of the Catalan front in 1938.

There are better-known (though not better) books about the Civil War by Malraux, Hemingway and Orwell, but Uncertain Glory has the advantage of being written by a Catalan from inside his complex, war-torn society. A committed defender of Catalan independence, Joan Sales (1912–83) fought the Civil War with both anarchist

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