“Pájaros de ciudad” is a novel by Steven Cubillo. An example of Costa Rican literature.

Costa Rican literature has a colonial background and a strong European influence, so most of its works have been produced mainly in Spanish, although numerous works have also been written in other languages, such as English and French.

By the end of the 19th century, a group of intellectuals and politicians who favored the development of liberal policies had already consolidated in the country: the “generation of Olympus”, a name due to their position of distancing themselves from the social actors they portrayed in their literary texts.

Currently, many young Costa Rican writers have emerged. Among them, Steven Cubillo, who wrote the novel “Pájaros en la ciudad” (Birds in the city) that touches on current issues in a surrealistic way.

“Pájaros de ciudad” (City Birds) a novel by Steven Cubillo

A man wakes up in the armchair of his house and notices, to his surprise, that the other furniture, doors and windows are missing. As he approaches a wall he discovers that it is made up of millions of tiny letters showing the most varied texts. The rest of the room repeats the phenomenon: everything is made of words, lists, codes, poems, definitions and concepts.

Fearing an abduction, and when everything seems enough to break his sanity, he discovers a film player and a cardboard box with some film reels. Then he sees floating some kind of white lumps that vibrate and pulsate, acquiring the shape of a creepy female silhouette. The lady, with her gestures, orders him to place a tape.

In this way, Bastián will begin the review of his life on the beach of his childhood, fighting with mythical beings of the sea and the sky, to then fly to a valley of cement and lights, where he will try to recover the lost paradise through song, journeys, loneliness, commitment and writing, under the lighthouse of his grandparents’ love.

Pájaros en la ciudad

A literary work for Costa Rican society

Costa Rican art has been established according to the social behaviors and aesthetic demands of certain historical epochs through which Costa Rican society has passed.

The novel presented to us by Steven Cubillo, covers the psychological world in a bibliographic, mysterious and surrealistic way, but from a humanist vision. It shows us how humanity has failed to establish a new order, where love is what moves us as a society. The author portrays the character’s conflict, with his ego and social marginality: loneliness, drugs and the battle to overcome extreme conditions of despair.

“Pájaros de ciudad” is a work with a deep meaning about art and life. Developed in two simultaneous and alternate moments, this story is built from the imagination of Steven Cubillo. A surrealistic writing of the space-time of the present. 


Zelda Walters for SensorialSunsets