#45 Captain Pantoja and the Special Service – Mario Vargas Llosa


Captain Pantoja and the Special Service


Mario Vargas Llosa


Nobel Prize, Historical Fiction, Absurdist Fiction







Title (Original)

Pantaléon y Las Visitadoras

Year of Publication



Captain_Pantoja_and_the_Special_Service_-_ Mario_Vargas_Llosa

Short Description & Notes

The sexual impulses of the Peruvian Army seconded to the region of Amazon are difficult to control. Women of all ages and marital status have been suffering the consequences of their female deprivation. Captain Pantaleón Pantoja has the strange and hard mission of control this situation. He designs a very organized Special Service to provide women to the soldiers, so they do not need to attack local ladies anymore. The sex providers are called “the visitors”. Apparently Captain Pantoja’s work has no flaws, until the moment he becomes interested in a visitor called “The Brazilian”.
It is a book somehow hard to read because the author describes distinct scenes with different characters, in the same sentence without changing the paragraph.

“This delightful farce opens as the prim and proper Captain Pantoja learns he is to be sent to Peru’s Amazon frontier on a secret mission for the army—to provide females for the amorous recruits. Side-splitting complications arise as world of Captain Pantoja’s remarkable achievements start to spread. ” – Goodreads: Captain Pantoja and the Special Service

Remarkable Quotes

“Há incompatibilidade entre visitadora e puta, passe a expressão. Vocês são funcionárias civis do Exército, e não traficantes de sexo.”

Fun Facts

The plot is based on real facts. Llosa travelled into the jungle in the late 50’s in order to investigate the past facts that would be the milestone to this famous book.

It has been adapted to cinema in 2000 by the hand of Francisco Lombardi.

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