Saturday, February 27, 2010

Brief Woundrous Life of Oscar Wao

Is it important not to die a virgin? In this book, if one is from the Dominican Republic (DR), it is vitally important. Did I care if he died a virgin or not? Well, not so much.

I liked that the book was told from the point of view of a friend, even if said friend did seem pretty darn omniscient, in that he knew the whole entire history of Oscar's family, as well as detailed history of the DR. My favorite part was about Abelard, Oscar's grandfather, and his dealings with Trujillo (brutal dictator). I liked the sprinklings of Spanish, even though I missed a lot of meaning because my Spanish is so poor. I liked the sci-fi references. I was afraid I'd miss a lot of them, not being a sci-fi geek myself, but no, I think I got them.

Did I love this book? This Pulitzer Prize winning book? Well, not really. I'm glad I read it, glad in a "glad-it's-under-my-belt" kind of way. Good to learn more about the DR and Trujillo. None of the characters were particularly likable, though that isn't necessarily always a goal. These people went through shit and, for the most part, came out the other side. So...resilience, survival. A bit grim.

Now onto Impatient With Desire...about the Donner Party. Which won't be grim at all.

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