María Dueñas reads from and discusses her new book, The Time in Between.
Set in Madrid, Tetuán, and Lisbon before the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War through the Second World War, The Time in Between follows the life of Sira Quiroga. Born a poor seamstress in Madrid, Sira—after being abandoned in Tangiers by her lover—forges a new identity and becomes the most sought-after couturiere in North Africa, catering to the idle rich and the wealthy wives of high ranking officials. Sira dreams only of paying off her debts and rescuing her mother from war-torn Madrid, but soon finds herself embroiled in a world of spies and counterspies. Her profession puts her in a perfect position to garner classified intelligence and then pass it along to the British Secret Service through Morse code secretly stitched into the patterns of her haute couture dresses. The book sold 2.5 million copies in Spain and is being published for the first time in English in the United States by Atria Books.
Recorded Wednesday, November 16, 2011 at the Instituto Cervantes.