Two New Novels Found in Roberto Bolaño's Desk

Two new novels were found among the papers recovered posthumously from famed Chilean author Roberto Bolaño's desk in Spain. La Vanguardia reports that the previously unknown manuscripts are entitled Diorama and The Troubles of the Real Police Officer. It is also believed that a sixth section of the author's critically acclaimed novel, 2666 may have been found.

The Third Reich, another previously unknown novel by the author, was discovered last year and shown to publishers at the Frankfurt book fair in October of 2008. Bolaño's work didn't garner international attention until after his death, when his novel 2666 was translated into English and named by the NY Times as one of the top 10 books of 2008. The new novels were discovered among piles of documents, notebooks and diaries that Bolaño left behind.

The author spent the last years of his life in the Costa Brava region of Spain and died in 2003 at the age of 50. Biographers hope that the documents that have been left behind will help them to shed some light on Bolaño's mysterious past. Although the author claims to have been in Chile during the violent coup that took Allende out of power, many of his friends have since denied that claim, saying he was in Mexico at the time. Another aspect of Bolaño's past that has been called into question is his supposed heroin addiction.

Many presumed that his premature death was related to his drug problems, but his wife recently spoke out against that assumption, saying, "Roberto never suffered any form of addiction to drugs, including heroin. This longstanding misunderstanding seems to have been conjured from the coincidence of Roberto's illness and the subject matter of his story The Beach. Though written in the first person, that story is truly a work of fiction."