The Scent of Lemon Leaves Saga (Saga Lo que esconde tu nombre)

The Scent of Lemon Leaves | When the Light Appears 

Evil is not evil until its mask of good is ripped off.

Thirty-year-old Sandra is at a crossroads in her life: pregnant with a man whom she does not love and jobless. Because of this, she decides to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city to stay at her sister’s house in Alicante on the east coast of Spain. Shortly after her arrival, she meets and befriends the Christensen’s, a Norwegian elderly couple who have been living in the Mediterranean town for several years.

Julian is an old man who has just arrived from Argentina. He is a survivor of the Mauthausen concentration camp and is still reminded of all the events that took place there: starvation, fear, and cruelty.  Since then, he has dedicated his entire life to hunting down Nazis that were hiding throughout the world leading a totally normal life. Julián follows, step by step, the comings and goings of the Norwegian couple, who apparently scarred his life after his stay in the concentration camp and who now live carefree under the warm Mediterranean sun.

Julian decides to approach Sandra and reveals unsuspected details about the Christensen’s, explaining that they are not what they appear to be. Although the young woman does not believe it at first, little by little she will begin to pay close attention to the way the elderly couple behaves, their habits, and their friends. She is unaware of the reality of the matter and that she is putting her life, and that of her son, in danger.

A year and a half later, Sandra’s life has taken a turn for the better after escaping from the clutches of the elderly group that almost cost her her life. Removed from the past, her new life seems happily on track but, one day, when picking up her son from daycare, she finds an unsigned note in his backpack: “WHERE IS YOUR FRIEND JULIÁN? YOU´LL HEAR FROM US AGAIN”. After a long time without hearing from Julian, Sandra will have to track him down and warn him that someone is on his trail and will stop at nothing until they find him. Thus, Sandra will return to the coast, this time accompanied by Santi, her son’s father.

Meanwhile, Julian spends his days at the Los Tres Olivos elderly residence. Although Sandra and himself have uncovered the whereabouts of several members of the nazi Fellowship, many of them are still around. This is why Julian has remained determined to bring to light the identity of each and every one of the remaining Nazis. And it is no coincidence that Julian has chosen this residence to live in: this is where his next targets reside. He will have to live with them in the strictest anonymity in order not to be discovered and he will try, and succeed in, driving them crazy with little alterations to their belongings and perfectly tidy rooms. Thanks to these risky movements and Julian’s deep investigation, we find out what kind of strange residence Los Tres Olivos is. Nazis, ruined aristocrats, nurses, thugs, and newcomers alienated by the Nazi party coexist in its rooms, its gardens, and its beach.


RELEVANT DATA: The author has won the Nadal Novel Award for The Scent of Lemon Leaves. The work was a bestseller in Spain and Italy, reaching half a million copies sold in both countries.

Clara Sanchez has received the most important literary awards in the Spanish-speaking world, such as the Planeta Award and the Alfaguara Award. In addition to these, she has been awarded the Mandarache Award for Young Readers, the Roma Award, the Italian National Vincenzo Padula Award, the Literary Institute and Hispanic Culture Award (for her literary career), and the Bilbao Booksellers Award, among many others. Her works have been translated into some twenty countries and she has sold more than two million books. Clara Sánchez is also a specialist in cinema, and in this field, she participated for five years in the Spanish public television (TVE) program ¡Qué grande es el cine!


What the critics have said:

“The delicacy of the descriptions, the empathy that the characters awaken, the intrigue of the plot… Clara Sánchez manages to envelop each page in a mist of mystery that is impossible to avoid.” El Imparcial newspaper

“Gripping from beginning to end, that’s how I felt this novel.” Goodreads


AUDIOVISUAL POTENTIAL: TV Series, Miniseries, Film, TV Movie.

LANGUAGES AVAILABLE: Spanish, Italian, English, Portuguese, Turkish, Bulgarian, French, Romanian, Czech, Hungarian.

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