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Two More New Books: Junot Diaz and Paul Torday

By posted at 7:33 pm on March 5, 2007 1

Josh Ferris, who continues to do an admirable job filling in at TEV, noted today that Junot Diaz’s long-awaited novel The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao finally has a street date.

The reason I’m so excited about this is that Diaz’s story by the same title in the New Yorker’s 2000 end-of-year fiction issue was one of the best stories that’s appeared in the magazine in the ten years I’ve been reading it. It is a story so good that I still remember talking to various people about in my then home city of Los Angeles, people with whom I never before or after talked fiction. It was a story that got around. And now, finally, it has blossomed into a book.

Unfortunately, since the story dates from the NYer’s stone age era, it’s not available online, but a brief excerpt is available. In addition, Ferris at TEV has pointed to an audio interview of Diaz.

coverSeparately, (and also not available online), The Economist has a short but fairly glowing review of Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, the debut novel of Paul Torday. “Every so often,” the review begins,

a novel comes along that is quite original; think of Yann Martel’s enchanting Life of Pi, for instance. Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is another oddball piece of fiction that – despite being told through dry diary extracts, e-mails and reports – is an amusing satire on the tensions between the West and the Middle East, and a commentary on the value of belief to mankind.

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One Response to “Two More New Books: Junot Diaz and Paul Torday”

  1. Celia
    at 7:11 am on July 31, 2007

    I'm the co-founder of a new literary magazine, Slice, and a big fan of Junot Diaz's work. Please check out our website and read about our debut issue, which includes an exclusive interview with Junot Diaz about how he began his writing career. http://www.slicemagazine.org.

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