THE SAME CITY, by Luisgé Martín, is a mid-life crisis novel that kicks off during the 9-11 attacks. On its original publication in Spain in 2013 film rights were sold to Hollywood and the original Spanish edition was immediately reviewed by the Times Literary Supplement:
"As well as the American setting, the ups and downs of our protagonist recall comparable arcs in the novels of Paul Auster and Philip Roth. The forty-something white guy realizing that he has wasted his life is a staple of US fiction. . . the plot is compressed and the prose tight. . . In his sixth novel Martín has delivered a clever and pacy modern fable." —Ben Bollig, Times Literary Supplement
Brandon Moy, a mild-mannered New York executive in the midst of a midlife crisis, has a happenstance encounter with Albert Fergus, a long-lost friend. The glamorous and adventurous existence Albert recounts, contrasting with his own sensible, predictable routine, will unleash in him a deep feeling of waste and regret. The next day, September 11, after his wife and son have headed out for the day, his late start to work will fortuitously save his life, for instead of being at his desk in one of the Twin Towers, he is still in the subway when the planes hit. Realizing that as far as the world is concerned, he is dead, he decides right then and there to take this second chance to do all he yearns for. He buries his former identity and, with only a few dollars in his pocket, sets off on foot in search of a new place to fulfill his dreams. But will he find it, or will they all in the end turn out to be the same city?
Luisgé Martín (Madrid, 1962) graduated in Spanish Language from the University of Madrid. He has worked as an editor for Ediciones SM and in Ediciones del Prado. His writing includes the short story collections Los oscuros (1990) and El alma del erizo (2002) and the novels La dulce ira (1995), La muerte de Tadzio (2000)—Premio Ramón Gómez de la Serna— Los amores confiados (2005), Las manos cortadas (2009) and Woman in Darkness (Hispabooks 2014). He contributes occasionally to El Viajero, Babelia, El País and other Spanish publications. His latest work of fiction is La vida equivocada.