Junot Diaz: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

Det her er en historien om Oscar Wao, en ung mand med rødder i den Dominikanske Republik, og hans opvækst og møder med familie og ulykkelig kærlighed. I virkeligheden er det dog lige så meget en slags slægstroman, fordi vi også får familiehistorien flere generationer tilbage udfoldet ret så grundigt.

Jeg tænkte ud fra omtaler, at den her ville være noget for mig. Det var den så ikke. Bevares, den var da fin og sine steder sjov og fyldt af gode onliners. Men den blev også på en eller anden måde for form- og stilfikseret i stedet for bare at fortælle den gode historie. Selv om jeg godt kan se det sjove i sammenstillingen af dominikanske traditioner, ulykkelig teenagekærlighed og rollespilsmetaforer, så kan det altså ikke bære en bog hjem.

It was obvious what was happening, but what could he do? There was no denying what he felt. Did he lose sleep? Yes. Did he lose important hours of concentration? Yes. Did he stop reading his Andre Norton books and even lose interest in the final issues of Watchmen, which were unfolding in the illest way? Yes. Did he start borrowing his tío’s car for long rides to the Shore, parking at Sandy Hook, where his mom used to take them before she got sick, back when Oscar hadn’t been too fat, before she stopped going to the beach altogether? Yes. Did his youthful unrequited love cause him to lose weight? Unfortunately, this alone it did not provide, and for the life of him he couldn’t understand why. When Lola had broken up with Golden Gloves she’d lost almost twenty pounds. What kind of genetic discrimination was this, handed down by what kind of scrub God?

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