(Barrancabermeja, 1960) Colombian writer. He spent three years working on a cargo ship and, on his return, studied Philosophy, writing a thesis on Asia and Africa. Lecturer at Rosario University in Bogota, he published his first book, La marca de España, in 1997. This was followed by the book of short stories De parte de Dios (2000) and Tamerlán (2003), a powerful, magical and lively novel that tells of the life of Timur Leng, also known as Tamerlane, one of the most violent and terrible conquerors the world has ever seen. In 2007 he published the novel Donde no te conozcan and a year later El hombre de diamante. With his novel La diosa mortal (2014) he examined the intricate ins and outs of the Roman world, and in 2016 he published his most recent work: ¿Por qué fracasa Colombia?, a non-fiction book that looks at the nature of Colombia. He has been acclaimed by major literary figures including Gabriel García Márquez, Álvaro Mutis and Alfonso López Michelsen, and is considered to be one of Colombia’s most important and best-known authors.