Melinda's Reviews > The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Díaz
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's review
Nov 03, 09

bookshelves: book-club
Read in April, 2009

I wanted to like this book, I really did. But this is not Oscar's story. It's about his sister and his mother. It starts out promisingly and then gets lost in it's own stream of consciousness garble and it's footnotes (that are laborious and really break up the cadence of the narrative).

For example: "Dude (Oscar) wasn't no Ringwraith, but he wasn't no Orc, either". So, what, exactly does that mean? If you haven't read Lord of the Rings that sentence makes no sense. And if you have read LOTR, sentence makes no sense, dude.

I also balked at the use of the N word. It's unnecessary in this day and age to use that word so often and flippantly. (In a book about slavery by Toni Morrison or Edward P Jones, I can take it because it's relevant....here it is just (over)used for shock value).

A big miss for me. I did not find it humorous or interesting or relevant. In my quest to read every novel that has won the Pulitzer then I got to check it off my list...and that's all.
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