Concha Alborg’s first collection of short stories, Una noche en casa (A Night at Home) is loosely based on her life experiences and can be read as a novel since the stories share the same characters. It takes place in Spain during the repressive years of Franco’s regime. The female narrator, with characteristic humor, takes us from Madrid to the very day in which her family boards the plane to the United States. Hers is a testimony of many families like her own who are shaped by the strong traditions and hard times after the Spanish Civil War. Una noche en casa has received praise from critics in Spain and in the United States. The author has finished an English translation of this book with the title A Night at Home. See reviews of this book under “Reviews.”
Illustration on the cover “De vuelta a casa” (Return home) by Cristóbal Toral.
Carmen Martín Gaite said of Una noche en casa: “My favorite part is the technique of remembering from the actual situation, the wedges of present interlacing the remembrances. There are some chapters, like the one searching for the Gisela doll, or the one about the houndstooth coat, or the one in the brother’s house, which are simply splendid.” (On the back cover).
Paz Macías-Fernández said of this book: “Alborg’s stories flow with the freshness, the spontaneity, the flavor, the colors and even the smells of the lived experience, without a trace of the self-consciousness of a literary critic. Perhaps the greatest achievement of the collection is the rare combination of lightness and intelligence of her prose. The stories are intimate scenes, full of grace that the reader can devour in one or at most in two sittings, and they are also a lucid literary recreation of the up-rootedness experience.”
in Letras Femeninas, 23, 1997: 213-215.