This book is the second volume in Manuel Scorza's five-part novelistic cycle entitled
La guerra silenciosa (The Silent War). In his saga, Scorza describes an Andean peasant uprising that he witnessed in the 1960's. Although many of the names, places, dates, and events are real, the author fictionalizes his testimonial by adding humor, myth, and fantasy. Garabombo, the novel's titular protagonist, is modeled on Fermín Espinoza, an Indian whom Scorza knew personally. Although the fictionalized portrait adheres rather closely to its model, Scorza endows the novelistic Garabombo with the attribute of a symbolic invisibility.