Alaric Al Necro Cabiling is author of Insanity By Increments, stories. He is also known for his published articles at CvltNation.com and EchoesAndDust.com promoting the international extreme music scene.
Junot Diaz was a new name to me when I discovered his enticing collection of short stories, This Is How You Lose Her. I immediately thought that the stories would have been heartbreaking based on the title, but don't think for a minute that failed relationships is all there is to this book.
This Is How You Lose Her was vastly entertaining, and I was really intrigued with Junot Diaz' colorful, poetic but confident prose. The first story, The Sun, The Moon, The Stars, immediately drew me in, and Diaz doesn't disappoint in this collection. One by one, the stories enthralled, sending me rolling on the floor laughing while feeling deeply empathic for the characters at the same time.
The best story on here is 'The Cheater's Guide to Love," if you had to pick a favorite. Diaz doesn't imbue an egocentric literary elitism on this collection. He tells it in a way that modern folks can relate to, without sounding rambling colloquial at the same time.
he paints vivid portraits, and his efforts at brisk but colorful characterization are effective. You get to know these characters in the short time you spend reading about them, and are unsurprisingly drawn into a world outside of your own for the duration of this book. The story, "Ms. Lora," was such an eye-opener. It was juicy without sounding gimmicky-erotic. Latino popular culture has never seen a better narrator. Honestly. Literature should be both fun and entertaining and never more have I been so overwhelmingly won over with such a potent combination.
So, take a trip to Yunior's world back and forth from Santo Domingo to New York City to Boston, Massachusetts. I am now a huge admirer of Diaz' work and being a short story lover, I can't wait til he puts together another entertaining collection. Superb!