A unique story that interweaves crime fiction with intimate tales of morality and the search for individual freedom. Translated by Frances Riddle.

After Rita is found dead in the bell tower of the church she used to attend, the official investigation into the incident is quickly closed. Her sickly mother is the only person still determined to find the culprit. Chronicling a difficult journey across the suburbs of the city, an old debt and a revealing conversation, Elena Knows unravels the secrets of its characters and the hidden facets of authoritarianism and hypocrisy in our society.

Shortlisted
The 2022 International Booker Prize
Published by
Charco Press
Publication date
Claudia Pineiro

Claudia Piñeiro

About the Author

Claudia Piñeiro is best known for her crime novels, which are bestsellers in Argentina, Latin America and around the world. Many of her novels have been adapted for the big screen.
More about Claudia Piñeiro
Frances Riddle

Frances Riddle

About the Translator

Frances Riddle has translated numerous Spanish-language authors, including Isabel Allende, Claudia Piñeiro, Leila Guerriero, María Fernanda Ampuero, and Sara Gallardo.
More about Frances Riddle

The things I found most enjoyable about translating Elena Knows were also the biggest challenges. I was
initially drawn to the style and format of this book with its long sentences and long paragraphs and unmarked speech.

— Frances Riddle, translator of Elena Knows

Claudia Piñeiro’s short and deeply felt novel, evokes the loneliness of ageing and the uncertainty of memory. Frances Riddle’s brutal yet sparing translation suggests the shadows and light of noir without ever eclipsing the very human tragedy at the core of the book.

— The 2022 International Booker Prize judges