Thursday, December 20, 2012

This Is How You Lose Her - by Junot Diaz

I had high hopes for this collection of short stories, by one of my favorite authors, when I found a reference to going on a date in the library on the second page of the very first first story, and then read about "the nerd every librarian in town knows" only two pages later. I expected then, that the book will be chock-a-block full of libraries and librarians. Alas, it was not to be: these two library references were the only ones.

That is not to say that I did not thoroughly enjoy this work. The stories are original, and the writing is colorful. Those who read Diaz's previous collection of short stories, Drown, will remember the character Yunior, who is the protagonist in almost all of  these stories, except "Otravida,Otravez", the only story told from a woman's point of view. All, however, involve some pendejo (usually Yunior) treating some woman (or women) like crap. The last story, called "The Cheater's Guide to Love", where we learn that Yunior, even as a well-educated, grown man, never changes his ways brings it all together. Those looking for a story of redemption will not find it in this work.

This was the first book I bought through the iBooks store to read on my new iPad. I must say I liked it. It was cool the way I could use the virtual bookmarks, and virtual yellow sticky notes to remind myself what I wanted to write about. And I liked that I could read a popular new book without paying top dollar, or waiting a really long time on the library waiting list. The downside is that it is much more difficult to share this way.

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