It was true: that cancerous family of mine had every expectation that I'd be a millionaire someday, or at the very least President of the Republic.
-- Mario Vargas Llosa,
Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter
It's at least 100 degrees in the noonday sun. Mario Vargas Llosa stands on an outdoor stage draped with sewn-together sheets pinned with red and white paper flowers. He is in Bagua, a dusty town in the north Peruvian jungle known more for its rice growing than for its literary sophistication. As the primarily Indian audience of several thousand watches, a partially toothless man wearing sunglasses...