About the novels

Happy That It’s Not True 

Available now — Aignos Publishing, 2013

Happy That It's Not True by Carlos Aleman
“From page one I knew these people, they had been figures in my own life, whether as friends from high school, mentors I’ve had, relatives I still hold dear or fear. The journey of discovery that Cara experiences, the yearning for connection that consumes Octavio, Alex’s insecurity about his weight, the heartbreak of the castaways, Diego’s search for meaning , I’ve been in their shoes more times than I care to admit. I carried these characters with me when I wasn’t reading the book, imagining my own scenarios with them, as if this was a book I had written, or really, a life I had lived. It has been a couple months since I read the book all the way through, but I still think of them, particularly Diego, whose
devotion to Ling is what all boyfriends and husbands should strive for with their significant other.

The last thing I want to say about the book is, Zach Oliver and I started Aignos not only to discover new voices, all publishers have that desire, but to promote new ways of storytelling. Whereas many publishers shy away from the unconventional, we embrace it. Carlos’ structure throughout the book is different and innovative, but it becomes clear in the books final ten pages that what you just experienced was the slight of hand of a seasoned magician. For a first time author to do something as ambitious as what Carlos does here, and not only that, to pull it off like it was nothing special, that is the kind of innovation and vision Zach and I wanted to represent our company. Carlos doesn’t just tell stories, he creates experiences. I credit that daring to his being a painter. As a painter, he takes a simple image, say, a flower, and transposes layer upon
layer, until the flower is just an outline, what the painting really means held within. Happy That it’s Not True is like a painting, it is not enough to read it, you have to immerse yourself into it, peel back the layers, and discover something new, about art, about storytelling, about love, about life, and most of all, about yourself.” —Jonathan Marcantoni, Aignos Publishing (Author of The Feast of San Sebastian)


Short synopsis:

A Cuban rafter is telling a story to seven other men as they drift out at sea.  Only what seems like a story is actually his glimpse into a parallel existence.  Many years unfold in the storytelling as the balseros cling to life in the rough seas.  Cara, the young artist, grows up to become a troubled teenager, and her brother, Alex, develops into a genius with a weight problem.  Their, uncle, Diego, agrees to let them move in for the summer after a family crisis.  As Diego inspires and motivates Cara and Alex, he falls in love with an emotionally unavailable coworker.

The storyteller does not reveal all that he knows about lives of Diego, Cara and Alex.  But in his telling of the story, he tries to make sense of his own life and the erotic writings of the most mysterious person of all, his wife.

Meanwhile, in the parallel existence, the opposite of everything is true.

Click to read excepts

Amazon Reviews

Buy it in paperback

Buy the Kindle e-book version

“…a surprising, heartfelt, emotional literary debut.” —Chris Campanioni (Going Down)

“Readers will fall in love with the poetic narrative, the memorable characters and the twists and turns of a most tantalizing story.” —The Latina Book Club



Available now — Aignos Publishing, 2014
“Born as he was, the son of a suicidal policeman and a self-destructive woman of
ill-repute, Nuno arrived in the world with a capable heart and a mind ready
to explore the mysteries of life.

Nuno is evidence that the human experience can never be untangled from the
unfurling of history, that we are all creatures of our time even though time
can never define us. Though our quarrelling natures visit travesties upon
the world, we also accept, as Nuno does, that our capacity to connect will
ripple outward enriching all who would recognize the infinite within an
action. In the juxtaposition of our ferocious capacity for violence and the
limitless potential of our capacity for love, Nuno embodies the paradox of
the human experience, that our momentary existence is an artifact of

Through Nuno -in his discovery of love and through his crucible as a
political prisoner in communist Cuba- we, the lucky readers who have
discovered this tale, are given a chronicle of one man’s discovery of both
the timeliness and timelessness of the human experience and the healing balm
love provides even in the darkest crises of the soul.” —Zachary Oliver, Aignos

Short synopsis:

A boy named Nuno discovers that inspiration comes in many forms and is
often the one thing that erases pain and sadness.  One such
inspiration, a man named Bernando Bolocco, enters his world briefly and
seems to alter the trajectory of his life by his mere presence and
honesty.  Nuno is later prompted by a girl to take a book that
belongs to her father, a book written by Bolocco.  Within its pages
are the secrets to a woman’s heart.  Nuno grows in stature
and maturity and finds himself in dark times, his surroundings perilous
with the specter of violence constantly looming.  His only departure
from this reality is the love he has for a woman that fills his dreams and
every waking thought.  As darkness attempts to devour Nuno’s soul and
spirit, love helps him to endure all the things that exist outside his
dream world.


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