Curse of the bee

Curse of the bee

Degree in Journalism and Master's in International Relations, Claudia Pujol (Olot, 1976) He was the director of the magazine kitchen In recent years, he worked in the Historical Publishing magazine Get to know us, first as editor-in-chief and since 2010 as director. She is the author of books halfway between journalism and literature, such as A unique life (Mina, 2005), Diary of a coroner (Mina, 2007) ed Crime scene (Column, 2010). With the narrative that concerns us now, Don't rely on your memoriesPujol presents his first fantasy novel with a dark theme, and he does so through an exciting story with scientific and philosophical touches set in Val di Viagna.

Claudia Pujol © Enrique Marco

Don't rely on your memories It was now conceived twelve years before the author's actual encounter with a stranger who contacted her via Facebook, who suffered from obsessive-compulsive disorder. The man told her that he had a story he would like her to write in novel form. After initial astonishment, Pujol's journalistic curiosity led her to interview the stranger. More than the literary plot he proposed, the author was interested in the person who creates the character. The cause of obsessive-compulsive disorder (and we are talking about this twelve years ago, when the movie was the only reference for this disorder for many people) I prefer the impossible (1997) starring Jack Nicholson and Helen Hunt), in addition to the fact that the man was a fan of conspiracy theories, which prompted Claudia Pujol to write Don't rely on your memories. It seemed to him a metaphor for today's society, in which everyone, in one way or another, suffers from some kind of obsessive-compulsive disorder, because we have so many stimuli and live at such a dizzying pace that it becomes increasingly difficult to concentrate and, therefore, do less quality work.

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Samuel Heras, the hero of Pujol's novel, is the son of a mechanic and a tailor. He's 25 years old, suffers from OCD, has an above-average IQ, is obsessed with bees, and advocates conspiracy theories to the death. He seems to have started sending hints to his followers via his Instagram account, where he calls himself “Abella Maia” – and here Pujol updates the network and leaves Facebook behind. The first we know to have received one is Samuel's first psychologist, Mercy Ortigosa, a letter dated February 2012 and a poem by Marty and Paul. The second victim is Kai Rexach, the boy who used to do this bullying To Samuel when they were young. At first, it seems like a terrible joke, but things get complicated when the obituaries keep dying, for no apparent reason, on the announced dates. He is not the killer, and the Mossos d'Esquadra unit specializing in cyber crimes (which are neither like the heroes of American films of the 1920s and 1930s nor are they anti-heroes like in the 1970s, but human (people with their scars) will have to investigate a mysterious event that ends… This has global repercussions. The interesting thing about this whole process is the diversity of reactions from the recipients.

The author penetrates human psychology and considers how the same truth can be received in very different ways depending on who is experiencing it. The mind, the fears, the hopes… everything exists inside the human brain. Hence the topic of neuromarketing arises, which is the study of the brain in the purchasing process. There are companies that instead of interrogating people (who are able to lie) interrogate our brains (who are not able to lie), because biometrics is more reliable than the word itself. Hence the issue of belief in conspiracy theories as well. In Samuel's case, he believes that George Bush is manipulating France's best-selling newspaper, believes in “the long shadow looming behind the Moscow attacks,” and in no way believes that man has ever set foot on the moon.

The bee metaphor is obvious: Claudia Pujol refers to Henry Ford's great invention, chain labor, which one of his heroes links to a lack of freedom.

Don't rely on your memories He is a great stenographer of the zeitgeist. This is why the author and her characters play with memories, because in our lives memories change and we do not see things in the same way. Personalizing memories is a human thing, but in Samuel's case it goes further, because if he does not take the medicine he suffers from hallucinations and does not distinguish what is true and what is not true: at the age of six he saw his mother “literally” sewn to the wrought iron chair Another character, who is under the influence of drugs, also has distorted memories. Parallel to the theme of memory, there is an obsession with bees (the cover of the book is amazing), because it is the mark of the killer. Two of the characters are also beekeepers. Along with pigeons, bees are animals Disliked by the novel's characters: Mercy is allergic to them and Samuel is a beekeeper and has been stung. An insect as small as a bee has the power to burden humans, and at the same time, as Einstein said, is essential to humanity's survival. In the novel a new mystery is raised: why bees are disappearing Worldwide? Are we talking about climate change? Pesticides?

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The bee metaphor is obvious: Claudia Pujol points to Henry Ford's great invention, chain labor, popular in the world of bees, although Samuel “could not avoid associating the chain with a lack of freedom.” Taking advantage of this freedom and transforming his OCD into a personality disorder, the protagonist takes on multiple identities on Instagram: Star Line, María Celeste, Nikolai Rimsky-Kórsakov, and, above all, Abella Maia. Next to Samuel (the cold, analytical) comes the antagonistic character, his partner Sibel (the more naive and noble), who tries to get into Samuel's brain to decode him: “Saybil always saved him. Even in dreams.” Love as redemption is another of the underlying themes Don't rely on your memoriesa really welcome novel.

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