I’ve heard a lot of good things about Junot Diaz, so I was excited when I saw this book on the shelf at Goodwill. It weighs just six ounces, so it was perfect for the trail. This is How You Lose Her is mostly short stories about a boy named Yunior, his family life and romances.
Diaz’s writing is really good, the Spanglish adding to the personality that’s so intrinsic to his story. An American Latino, Yunior has to find his way in the world that’s not made easy for him. He seems to do alright, but I didn’t find Diaz’s blunt descriptions of rapey sex scenes or scenes where people witnessed more than they should to be appealing to me – I should say the bluntness and directness with which he approached these scenes made me squirm. They left me with a bad taste in my mouth. I know these things happen, but I started this book as a pleasure read and wasn’t excited for the nasty graphics.
I might still read The Brief and Wonderous Life of Oscar Wao, but if his writing style continues to be at times gruesome and at times disgusting, then perhaps it’s not for me. Diaz’s writing reminds me of Augusten Burroughs’ writing or that of the author of Ivan Isaenko, kind of revolting but also I want to read more, if you know what I mean.