Controversial film revives book's popularity

21st January 2005, Comments 0 comments

21 January 2005, BARCELONA- An award-winning Spanish film about a paralysed man's fight for the right to die has resurrected the previously out-of-print book at the heart of the story, with the new paperback edition surpassing 100,000 copies, a big best-seller in a European market.

21 January 2005

BARCELONA- An award-winning Spanish film about a paralysed man's fight for the right to die has resurrected the previously out-of-print book at the heart of the story, with the new paperback edition surpassing 100,000 copies, a big best-seller in a European market.

Spain's Booket publishing house said "Cartas desde el Infierno" (Letters from Hell), by Ramon Sampedro topped that watershed sales number in recent days and continues going strong.

The book is by the protagonist of the story portrayed in "Mar Adentro" (The Sea Inside), the feature by Chilean-Spanish director Alejandro Amenabar that won the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Film this week.

He killed himself in 1998 at the age of 54 by drinking, with the aid of a friend, a cyanide solution after spending 26 years in bed as a quadriplegic.

He had been paralyzed as the result of spinal cord damage from striking a submerged rock while diving into the ocean as a young man.


The film provoked a national debate about euthanasia, which campaigners want legalised.

Sampedro's memoir was first published by Spain's Planeta house in 1996, and reissued by Booket shortly after its author's suicide in 1998. After middling sales, it went out of print.

The new edition published last October includes an introduction by Amenabar and a previously unpublished letter by Sampedro, his last.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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