This post is also available in: Spanish

Dear Sarah,

Today was an emotional day for me here in Santiago. I met a wonderful girl, thirteen-year-old Esperanza Bustos, from the town of San Fernando, near Santiago, who has read twelve of my nineteen books. She is tiny, lovely and very smart. Let me tell you the story.

The Chilean National Association of Journalists (ANP) organized a contest among school kids. Six thousand children from all over the country participated, sending in questions for an interview with a public person of their choice. The second prize went to Esperanza Bustos, whose questions were the most interesting and challenging I have had in years. For example: “You have suffered a lot in your life. Is pain necessary to be a good writer?” Esperanza came to meet me with her mother. The girl brought a hardcover of The House of the Spirits that she had purchased to donate to the minuscule library in her town, where she has been borrowing books since she learned to read. I wish I had more fans like Esperanza!

She is my size!


Smart and cute.


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