Born in Valencia, today he is best known in the English-speaking world for his World War I novel Los cuatro jinetes del apocalipsis. Filmed in 1921 as The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, it was filmed again in 1962, reset in World War II. However, in his time he was a best-selling author inside and outside of Spain, and also known for his controversial political activities. While Sangre y arena (Blood and Sand) and Los cuatro jinetes del apocalipsis are his most popular novels, particularly outside of Spain, his Valencian novels such as La barraca and Cañas y barro are the ones most valued by scholars.
He finished studying law, but hardly practiced. He divided his time between politics, literature and dalliances with women, of whom he was a deep admirer. He wrote with uncanny speed and energy. He was a fan of Miguel de Cervantes.
His life, it can be said, tells a more interesting story than his novels. He was a militant Republican partisan in his youth and founded a newspaper, El Pueblo (translated as either The Town or The People) in his hometown. The newspaper aroused so much controversy that it was brought to court many times and censored. He made many enemies and was shot and almost killed in one dispute. The bullet was caught in the clasp of his belt. He had several stormy love affairs.
He volunteered as the proofreader for the novel Noli Me Tangere, in which the Filipino patriot José Rizal expressed his contempt of the Spanish colonization of the Philippines. He travelled to Argentina in 1909 where two new cities, Nueva Valencia and Cervantes, were created. He gave conferences on historical events and Spanish literature. Tired and disgusted with government failures and inaction, Vicente Blasco Ibáñez moved to Paris at the beginning of World War I.
He was a supporter of the Allies in World War I.
His themes include his native Valencia.
He died in Menton, France, in 1928 at the age of 61, in the residence of Fontana Rosa (also named the House of Writers, dedicated to Cervantes, Dickens and Shakespeare) that he built.
Vicente Blasco Ibanez's Books on Amazon: Vicente Blasco Ibáñez