Elsa Osorio


©Daniel Mordzinski



Elsa Osorio was born in Buenos Aires in 1952. She lived in Madrid for 14 years. In 2006 she returned to Argentina, although she spends part of the year in Europe and Uruguay. Osorio is a novelist and screenwriter for film and television. She runs a creative writing school, currently online. Her work has won, among others, the National Award in Argentina, the Argentores Award for Best Comedy Screenplay, the Humor Journalism Award, the Amnesty International Award, and has been a finalist for the Fémina Prize in France. Her novel A veinte años, Luz has been translated into over 20 languages.



Doble fondo (“False Bottom”) is set in the north of France in 2004. The body of a drowned woman is found at a fishing village on the French coast. It is Marie Le Boullec, a respected doctor from a nearby town. Circumstances call the attention of a young journalist, Muriel, who does not believe it was a suicide. The case recalls those who disappeared during the Argentine dictatorship, thrown alive to the sea from a plane. Muriel begins to write articles in the local newspaper, they arouse so much interest among readers that they are picked up by the national press. Some people would like to silence her, but she presses ahead. When Muriel discovers that the identity of the victim was false, she also finds some very revealing emails exchanged between an Argentine young man, Matías, and Soledad, another of Marie's pseudonyms. For Muriel, things get complicated: She feels a stronger affection towards Matías, although their relationship is only virtual, which threatens her real relationship with Marcel, her research partner. With a growing suspense, the present and the past are interwoven until they reach a surprising end that shows the perverse repression of the political system, the desperate life of a woman in a borderline situation and the investigation that leads to the murderer.

Based on real facts, research and survivors’ testimonies, the characters and circumstances are fictional and respond to the needs of the novel.


Novel with a thriller atmosphere and a premeditated lightness, solved with great skill.

El País, Babelia, J. Ernesto Ayala-Dip


Above all, this well-researched novel paints the nuanced portrait of a mother willing to make the most painful sacrifices to protect her child from the consequences of her political involvement.

Le Monde des Livres


A chilling spy story.



Doble fondo pulls us in like a spiral at the top of which there is still a future, a possible future.

La Repubblica


A novel which expresses all the excellence of Elsa Osorio.



An essential novel of Elsa Osorio, narrated with her customary literary mastery.

Luis Sepúlveda, La Stampa



For A veinte años, Luz (“My Name is Light”), translated into over twenty languages, Elsa Osorio was awarded the Amnesty International Literary Prize, awarded for the first time on the Human Rights Organization’s 40th anniversary. Osorio's novel deals powerfully with a woman's quest for her identity shrouded in the blackest period of Argentina's history.

It was only a fleeting intuition, but her doubts about her true origins become an obsession for Luz: was she, as she had believed for twenty years, the daughter and granddaughter of addicts to the Argentine dictatorship or, on the contrary, was she the daughter, born in captivity, of two of the “disappeared”? As if suddenly the blindfold fell from her eyes, her entire past takes on a new meaning.

Sensitive and differentiated, Elsa Osorio recounts the shocking events in her world bestseller For My Name is Luz.



This book, written against oblivion, is a book that will never be forgotten.

Der Spiegel


A story of feelings, as captivating as a detective story, where voices, ages and settings constantly mingle.

Corriere della Sera


Seldom has a Latin American narrator succeeded in developing a novel in such a convincing way, at the same time turning fiction into an extraordinary documentary.

Süddeutsche Zeitung


Luz is a novel even more compromising than any of Sartre´s novels.

De Volkskrant


The most moving and captivating novel of the year.

Cosmopolitan (France)



Chance unites Ana and Luis in a tango, in a Paris milonga in 2000. She is French and loves tango with the same passion with which she rejects her father's country: Argentina. Luis is from Buenos Aires, passing through Paris, as the last bet to leave behind a deep economic and creative crisis. The project of making a film about tango, to be directed by Luis and in which Ana will participate, will link them from that moment on. Cielo de Tango (“Tango Sky”) recreates the history of a city and a music through the saga of two families, at opposite ends of the social spectrum. An explosive cocktail of love, fight, joy and betrayal, and a dangerous and sensual dance that melts them into a hug.



A novel that Carlos Gardel could have sung. Thrilling.

La Repubblica


The author (…) shows the flow of life of men and women, two families and a divided society that is reunited with a dance. (…) Heaven on earth.



Through tango and fiction, Elsa Osorio casts light on the genesis of the complex identity of the Argentinean.

Clarín Cultural Ñ


An ode to the art of living and to Argentina.

TV Arte


The author allows us to embark on a dance we wish will never end.




In a very moving way, Osorio's narratives deals in Callejón con salida (“Dead End With An Exit”) with the dreams and hopes of people who are looking for an exit from the dead end of their lives. Andrea finds the place where she can cry at the funeral for a stranger who is unknown to her; A man who during the dictatorship lived for many years under Marcos's name, finally gives Marcos his life back; Gabi travels in search of her missing brother and finds a completely different happiness. But all of them, even if they tell us about wounds that are difficult to heal – loss of identity, loneliness, betrayal – are open to hope. Hence the title of this book. Dead end with an exit, then, is the triumph of literature in its noblest sense: thanks to it, reality, even in its most sordid and disturbing aspects, becomes a message to relieve all those who, whether for political or personal reasons, had to remain silent and had no salvation. The author’s commanding domination of intrigue extends from beginning to end.



Direct and powerful tales.

El País


Osorio deeply penetrates and masters the art of telling stories.

La Reppublica



Mika Etchebéhère might seem a fictional character, but she existed. In the summer of 1936, Madrid vibrated with the revolutionary expectation of happiness; at the same time there is fear of what the right-wing military coup will bring to the country. The streets are full of young people looking for weapons for the imminent civil war. Together with her husband Hipólito, the Argentinean revolutionary Mika Etchebéhère has joined the armed resistance to fight Franco's troops for a fairer world - despite the unequal means at their disposal. Her political conviction and her love for her disease-prone husband have led her to war. When fate threatens to shake her vitality, it is once again events that help her overcome personal grief, and Mika, with her strong charisma and ability to inspire people, is indispensable to the ill-equipped militia. They appoint her Captain, the only woman to lead a column in the Spanish Civil War. And while she is with the young men and women under her command in the trenches near Madrid, they end up fighting the Moscow stalinists, and another drama begins. Mika – La Capitana (“Captain Miak”) A lightwax-narrated, stirring novel about the life and love story of a woman in times of war and revolution.








Doble fondo

Buenos Aires: Tusquets 2017, 376 p.

Barcelona: Tusquets 2018

France: Métailié 2018 Italy: Guanda 2017


Mika - La capitana

Buenos Aires: Seix Barral 2012; Tusquets 2017, 343 p.

France: Métailié 2012, pb 2014 Germany: Suhrkamp 2011 Italy: Guanda 2012, pb 2014 Netherlands: Ambo Anthos 2012 Spain: Siruela 2012


Cielo de tango

Buenos Aires: Planeta 2006, Colihue (Latin America) 2014, 448 p.

Brazil: Planeta 2008 France: Métailié 2007, pb 2008 Germany: Suhrkamp 2007, pb 2008 Italy: Guanda 2006 Netherlands: Ambo Anthos 2006, 2008 Poland: Oficyna Foksal Portugal: ASA 2007 Spain: Siruela 2006, Círculo de Lectores 2007


A veinte años, Luz

Buenos Aires: Mondadori 1999, Planeta 2006, Colihue (Latin America) 432 p.

Brazil: Objetiva 2001 China: Nanfan Chiayuan 2010 Denmark: Centrum 2001, pb 2003 Egypt: Al Arabi 2016 Finland: Otava 2001 France: Métailié 2000, Métailié Suite 2002, Seuil Points pb 2010 Germany: Suhrkamp 2000, btb 2002 pb, Suhrkamp pb 2007 Greece: Harlenic Hellas 2001 Indonesia: Pasataka Alvabet 2007 Israel: Keter 2003 Italy: Guanda 2000, pb 2002 Japan: Sony Magazines 2001 Korea: Bertelsmann 2011 Mexico: Mondadori 1999 Netherlands: Ambo Anthos 2000 , pb 2002 Poland: Oficyna Foksal 2009 Portugal: ASA 2000 Spain: Alba 1998, Círculo de lectores 1999, Punto de Lectura pb 2002, Siruela 2008 Sweden: Albert Bonniers 2001, pb 2003 Turkey: Dipnot UK: Bloomsbury 2003, pb 2004 USA: Bloomsbury 2004


Cómo tenerlo todo

Buenos Aires: Planeta 1993, 232 p.

(Pseudonym Barbara Lagrand)




Callejón con salida

Buenos Aires: Planeta 2009, 165 p.

Madrid: Planeta 2003

France: Métailié 2010 Germany: Suhrkamp 2010 Italy: Guanda 2009 Spain: Siruela 2009 Netherlands: Ambo Anthos 2010


Reina Mugre

Buenos Aires: Editorial Punto Sur 1990, 150 p.


Ritos privados

Buenos Aires: Editorial Losada 1982, 180 p .



Beatriz Guido. Mentir la verdad

Buenos Aires: Planeta 1991, 221 p.




Las malas lenguas

Buenos Aires: Centro Editor Latinoamericano 1995, 209 p.