The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

Front Cover
Penguin, 2007 - Fiction - 339 pages
307 Reviews

This is the long-awaited first novel from one of the most original and memorable writers working today.

Things have never been easy for Oscar, a sweet but disastrously overweight, lovesick Dominican ghetto nerd. From his home in New Jersey, where he lives with his old-world mother and rebellious sister, Oscar dreams of becoming the Dominican J. R. R. Tolkien and, most of all, of finding love. But he may never get what he wants, thanks to the Fukoe-the curse that has haunted the Oscar's family for generations, dooming them to prison, torture, tragic accidents, and, above all, ill-starred love. Oscar, still waiting for his first kiss, is just its most recent victim.

D'az immerses us in the tumultuous life of Oscar and the history of the family at large, rendering with genuine warmth and dazzling energy, humor, and insight the Dominican-American experience, and, ultimately, the endless human capacity to persevere in the face of heartbreak and loss. A true literary triumph, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao confirms Junot Diaz as one of the best and most exciting voices of our time.

  

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5 stars
118
4 stars
118
3 stars
42
2 stars
24
1 star
5

Wonderful smart writing! - LibraryThing
Diaz's prose makes the book. - LibraryThing
It definitely moved at an awesome pace. - LibraryThing
Great writing, some interesting characters, poor story. - LibraryThing
Insight into the horrors of the country's history. - LibraryThing
I enjoyed the imagery and symbolism. - LibraryThing

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - nosajeel - LibraryThing

I don't have much to add to the general praise this book has gotten. The writing was sparkling from beginning to end, notwithstanding the fact that I didn't understand every tenth word. The first ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Paulagraph - LibraryThing

This was a repeat read for me. I bought the book to give to my son for Xmas a few years back & did a quick read through at that time. Since a good friend & voracious reader has referenced the novel ... Read full review

All 11 reviews »

Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
11
Section 3
51
Section 4
77
Section 5
167
Section 6
204
Section 7
205
Section 8
211
Section 10
311
Section 11
315
Section 12
323
Section 13
329
Section 14
333
Section 15
337
Section 16
341
Copyright

Section 9
263

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2007)

Junot Diaz's fiction has appeared in "The New Yorker," "The Paris Review," and "The Best American Short Stories." His highly-anticipated first novel, "The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao," was greeted with rapturous reviews, including Michiko Kakutani in "The New York Times" calling it "a book that decisively establishes him as one of contemporary fiction's most distinctive and irresistible new voices." His debut story collection, "Drown," published eleven years prior to "Oscar Wao," was also met with unprecedented acclaim; it became a national bestseller, won numerous awards, and has since grown into a landmark of contemporary literature. Born in the Dominican Republic and raised in New Jersey, Diaz lives in New York City and is a professor of creative writing at MIT.

Bibliographic information