Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Goodbye, Beach

Last week I was here:

Ah, glory. Man, the end of vacation really blows. I'm struggling to get back into the swing of things. Work? Pshh. Grocery store? Eh. All I want to do is lay on the beach and daydream (and by daydream I mean doze off). This was my first grown-up vacation that gave me a break from my normal work week, but after which I still have to return to that normal work week. In college, it was so much different because all of life was pretty much like a vacation. Now I think I appreciate vacation more, but it's also hard to not spend all day every day dreaming up and planning my next one. I also have about zero motivation to write reviews for all the books I've read recently, and the list of things waiting to be reviewed is getting a bit backed up. Time, people. Just give me time.

So in honor of my Dominican vacation, here's a list of books with a Dominican theme (mind you, none of which I have read. Perhaps I should've thought of this before the vacay, but I am more inspired to read them now after having been there).

The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz — I know you've heard of it and probably read it. It won the Pulitzer in 2008. Apparently it's about a nerdy Dominican-American teenager that wants to be the Dominican J.R.R. Tolkien and find love (I'm summarizing from Goodreads).

In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez — Set in the Dominican Republic in the 1960s, three sisters are found dead in a Jeep crashed off a coastal cliff. Using the perspectives of the four Mirabel sisters, we get a glimpse into life under the Trujillo dictatorship. I hear great things about this one. Alvarez has several other novels set in the D.R. as well.

Let it Rain Coffee by Angie Cruz — Blending past and present and focusing on a family's escape from Trujillo's regime, Let it Rain Coffee is a novel about loss, love, family, memory, and the culture and history that define an individual. Lots of readers have praised this one for its history.

Unburnable by Marie-Elena John — Lillian Baptiste fled Dominica when she was 14, amidst secrets and scandal. Now she's returning to the island to face the demons of her past. Set in both contemporary America and WWII Dominica, the story weaves together the history and culture of both.

Do you like reading books of places you've been? What's your favorite world lit novel and/or favorite vacation destination?


bermudaonion said...

Your vacation sounds wonderful. I can get more reading done on the beach than anywhere else in the world.

softdrink said...

Umm, welcome back? That's the thing with vacations...I never want them to end!

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