I don’t like short stories at all. But since Junot Diaz is Junot Diaz I had to read this collection of short stories if just to say that I have read all of his books (three so far).
This is how you lose her is not a novel but it does feel like one because somehow, each story is tied to each other in a way that you just feel like you are reading, in reality, one big story in parts.
There was a moment when I felt like “oh no! This is what I paid so much for?” I think that was with the shortest story in the book “Otravez Otravida.” But then my sister told me that she felt the same way but that I should keep reading it because it picks up again and it was really good. I’m glad I did. When I finished the entire book, I went back to this particular story (which I had just skipped) because I still wanted more of ‘Yunior’ (the main character).
What can I say? The man (Diaz) knows his craft. The entire book is a tumultuous read that kept me on the border of stop eating altogether just so I could keep on reading. I just didn’t want it to end!
There are some misspelled words in Spanish that I just don’t know if they were printed like that by mistake of if that is how Diaz really intended it to be. I’ll ask him if I ever meet him in person again.
Also, some reviewers didn’t like the book because they got lost with the Spanish cursing and slang. If you read The brief wondrous life of Oscar Wao you know what I mean.
Excuse me! Junot Diaz didn’t feel the need to include a glossary of those words to the less fortunate ones who don’t speak ‘Dominican” :-) I really enjoyed reading about how macho Dominican men go down with love a lot worse than we women do.
What else is left to say? That I hope Diaz picks up all of his short stories and turns them into one steady novel. That would definitely win him another Pulitzer!
Seriously, if you don’t speak Dominican, keep this glossary of Dominican slang handy when you read the book. This other dictionary and this one are equally good!