All Mexico is in mourning today, after hearing the sad news of the passing of the great Mexican writer Carlos Fuentes at age 83. Born the November 11, 1928, in the city of Panamá, this great Mexican intellectual, narrator and essay writer transported us with his words to the most unusual and magical places.

Many Mexicans like myself are deeply sadden by this news, but what give us comfort is to know that this prolific writer will always be remembered. Here are five reasons he will be immortal:

  1. His influence in Mexico's political life. Carlos Fuentes was one of his country's greatest intellectuals. He always showed a strong political position when it came to defending his nation's interests. Recently, during a visit to Buenos Aires and while attending La Feria Internacional del Libro (International Book Fair) he stated that, Mexico's current presidential candidates were "mediocre" and "not very interesting."
  2. His numerous awards will always be Mexico's greatest pride. Among the recognitions this great writer received--for his extensive literary work--are  Rómulo Gallegos Award (1977), Cervantes Award (1987), Prince of Asturias' Award (1994) and the Great Cross of the Order of Isabel the Catholic (2009).
  3. His wonderful literary narrative will be kept in our hearts forever. Who does not remember Aura, one of his more famous novels? Although this book was published in 1962 and was one of his first novels, during what was called the "Latin American Boom", it still is a very important part of the recommended reading in some public schools!
  4. Carlos Fuentes' work continued to be read around the world. Much of his work used to generate disputes and controversy, and even his narrative was well-known in countries like Germany, France, United States and England. His influence in the world of literature is so great that some of his books continue selling between 20,000 to 50,000 copies, especially in countries like Germany where Latin American Literature only recently arrived.
  5. Carlos Fuentes taught us to see the "good side" of things (if there was one) Just at the beginning of this month, this Mexican narrator stated at La Feria Internacional del Libro in Buenos Aires, that crisis sometimes helped to write better literature, because, as he wisely said, "The world, good or bad, is going to continue producing villains and, in consequence, good books."

There's no doubt that this has been a very sad day for us Mexicans and all those who love the Spanish language, because a great intellectual and an excellent story teller has left us. We don't have any other choice but to give thanks to this illustrious character, since he always fought to feed our country's culture and tried to form a Mexico much more critical and informed.

May you Rest in Peace, our dear Carlos Fuentes!

What is your favorite Carlos Fuentes book? Tell us in the comments below.

About the author

Sandra Ortiz Juarez graduated with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications from the University of the Americas Puebla (UDLAP) in Mexico. Sandra received her Masters in Broadcast Journalism from the Escuela Superior de Imagen y Sonido (CES) in Madrid, Spain. She has collaborated with various media outlets including TV AZTECA (Mexico), Libertad Digital Television (Madrid, Spain), AOL Latino (New York) and she is now working with Mamás Latinas in their New York office.

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