The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
What is distinctive about Diaz’ writing is his polyglot Latin voice…the driving energy of youth, the streets and desire. But there is so much more. This book is a dense story about a tragic multi-generational family that transcends the Dominican immigrant move from the Dominican Republic to America and back again during the horrific Trujillo dictatorship vividly described in both story and footnotes. We are mesmerized by a sweet but disastrously overweight ghetto nerd who plays video games, uses big words and wants to become the next Tolkien. He is blinded most of all, by the heartbreaking desire to find love…to kiss a girl..to feel his body against hers. He blames the “fucu” a curse that has haunted Oscar’s family for generations. You will want to read it again the minute you finish the last page just to get it all…and to look up all the Spanish slang!
Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction, a NY Times notable Book, winner of the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, Time’s #1 Fiction Book of the Year, Winner of the John Sargent, Sr. First Novel Prize.
Junot Diaz was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, and raised in New Jersey. He now lives in NYC and is a professor at MIT