Javier Cercas was born in 1962 in Ibahernando, in the Cáceres province of Spain. He worked as a teaching assistant at the University of Illinois for two years in the 1980s, and became Professor of Spanish Literature at the University of Girona in 1989, a post he held until 2006.
He has published numerous literary studies, translations and essays and has also been a regular columnist for El País. He wrote his first volume of short stories, El móvil, in 1987, followed by his first novel El inquilino (1989). In 2001, Cercas’ novel Soldiers of Salamis was published to great acclaim, winning awards such as the Premio Salambó in 2002. David Trueba’s film adaptation (2003) won a Goya award.
The Anatomy of a Moment (published in Spain in 2009), for which Cercas won Spain’s National Narrative award, sold over ¼ million copies.