Tomorrow Pamplona Blog Tour 2011, Gig 8

Tomorrow Pamplona's author, Jan Van Mersbergen, is on a blog tour.  Each blogger was allowed to ask one burning question.  Here’s mine:

When I first read the title of your book, Tomorrow Pamplona and then found out it's about a boxer, my first thought was Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises which is one of my favorite novels. Is there some sort of connection between your book and Hemingway's? Did he influence your writing?

Jan: "I think I've read Hemingway's great novel six times, the first time when I was learning English in school, at the age of 17. The thing about that book was: the part in Pamplona is relatively small. I liked that. I liked the fishing and the beginning in Paris. And of course I liked the bull run, but I liked that in the context. When I wanted to write a story about a trip to Pamplona The Sun also Rises gave me the profession of the boxer. In the first sentence Robert Cohn is introduced as a former middleweight champion. The thing with that character is: he has problems with his wife; a story that connected with my Danny. So the influence is there in the story, the location, and even more in the way Hemingway tells his stories: with great compassion and without using difficult words, without much explanation. I still can recall whole scenes from For Whom the Bell Tolls; especially the scene where the main character is holding hands with the Spanish girl. Real sensitive writing. I hope I managed to do that, and make the Hemingway-homage complete."

From the Peirene website: Tomorrow Pamplona is story about "a professional boxer and a family man who meet by chance on a journey to the Pamplona Bull Run. The boxer is fleeing an unhappy love. The father hopes to escape his dull routine. Both know that, eventually, they will have to return to the place each calls “home."

I'd like to thank Jan for his answer and Meike at Peirene Press for arranging this Blog Tour and for sending me a review copy of Tomorrow Pamplona. You can follow the blog tour here.


  1. it's interesting how the writer pays homage to Hemingway & how that plays into his own work, thanks great question.

  2. I stopped by your blog today.

  3. it's funny how this book is quite big here on the book-o-sphere but in Holland nobody talks about him. I'm very curious though, will keep this in mind.


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