Gregorio Salvador suffered unjust reprisals for his political ideas in a country that “was quite stingy with my father”, as Marías recalled without being able to forgive. This wound healed in a plot thought that the author transformed into the plot (and below) of ‘Your face tomorrow’, a tribute to the father, an immense literary project considered by himself as his “best novel”, “the more complex and ambitious” and “with the greatest breath, dynamism and force” in its pages. A novel in three volumes, translated into 30 languages and of which nearly half a million copies have been sold worldwide. With the question of a face that will have no tomorrow, the disappearance of Javier Marías at the age of 70 at the end of this sweltering summer, turned the calendar of millions of readers into a dark December.
Javier Marías was born under the sign of literature on September 20, 1951. He is the youngest of five boys (the eldest, Julianín, died at the age of three) and the intellectual milieu determined by a teaching mother and a philosopher father make up his personality. His father, under the pressure of the political situation in Spain, spent long periods in the United States, where he taught at various universities, such as Wellesley College in Massachusetts. There, the family stays in the house of Jorge Guillén, the upper floor of which is occupied by Vladimir Nabokov. Perhaps the cries of little Javier, barely a year old, sometimes disturbed the sleep, the chess or the reading of the Russian writer to whom, years later, this boy who had become a famous novelist would pay homage, perhaps to compensate for the involuntary disturbances, in a beautiful album:’
Since the age of eleven, Javier has been writing to, in his words, “keep reading what I love”
Child Marias reads Richmal Crompton, Enid Blyton, Dumas, Salgari, Corbert, Paul Féval, Verne and of course Tintin comics. But as his friend, novelist and scholar Arturo Pérez-Reverte has sometimes said: “I wanted to be Tintin and Javier wanted to write it. Since the age of eleven, Javier has been writing to, in his words, “continue to read what I love”. He spent the summers with his family in Soria, with Heliodoro Carpintero and his sisters, Mercedes and Carmen, and it was there that he finished ‘La víspera’, a novel written at the age of fifteen that he never has ever published. It is, to say the least, singular that many years later, the two women closest to Javier’s maturity (his friend and assistant Mercedes and his sentimental companion Carmen), complete the nominal circle of a biography posed to the narrative structure of his work.
The writer and academic, undisputed figure in letters and candidate for the Nobel Prize, died at the beginning of the afternoon in Madrid from pneumonia which kept him hospitalized and in a coma for more than a month.
French: Javier Marias. What incredible pain. Que pena tan grande. Que silence en la vida.
Maxwell: The sad news of the death of Javier Marias. A true master. He had two apartments, one where everything was white, one where everything was black. He was also an extra in The Castle of Fu Manchu. He was a captivating interviewee.