Leila's Reviews > War by Candlelight: Stories

War by Candlelight by Daniel Alarcón
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's review
Jun 21, 2011

it was amazing

I bought this book for a work trip to Peru and started reading it after spending a day in Lima, where many of the stories take place. That, and the fact that one story takes place in NYC a block from my childhood apartment, may have enhanced my sense of connection to the book. But I think anyone reading it would feel the same sense of immediacy and intensity. Alarcon's writing is honest and clear, like a modern Latin Hemmingway. An interview in the back reveals that he left Lima as a child and wrote many of the stories immediately after returning as an adult to run a youth photography project in one of the slums. That freshness shines through in the loving descriptions of the gritty city and the race, class and political issues that complicate the lives of its inhabitants.

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