Junot Díaz has said that Santiago Vaquera-Vásquez is a “literary comet” that “impresses and illuminates” and leaves the reader moved. In this collection of short stories filled with wanderlust, Vaquera-Vásquez emphasizes those very personal relationships, especially those of love – the love that becomes obsessive and is doomed to fail – as well as the loss of love, in order to show how people try to connect with others. The three main narrators, two cousins and a friend, from the same small town in northern California, travel because it is all they know how to do. On their journeys, they think about their life as Hispanics in the United States and the many obstacles that Latinos here have faced as they search for a place where they can feel that they belong.
“Santiago Vaquera-Vásquez is a perfect example of those Hispanic writers in the United States who are unknown because they write in Spanish. Their tales speak of a people trapped between two worlds, between the North and the South, caught and not being able to connect with anyone. They are searching for something that is unobtainable. Other times these characters seem to discover a sense of freedom at these crossroads as if they were lifting up the anchor, as if this journey, this nomadic existence, were the essential human condition. – Edmundo Paz Soldán
Santiago Vaquera-Vásquez (Willows, California, 1966) is an unrepentant border crosser. He has been a broadcaster and an artist. He is the author of a collection of short stories, One Day I’ll Tell You the Things I’ve Seen (2015), Luego el Silencio, (2014), and Un día te cuento las cosas que he visto (2012). His work has been published in Spain, Latin America, and in Italy: Malos elementos. Relatos sobre la corrupción social (2012), En la frontera: i migliori raconti della letteratura chicana (2008), Pequeñas resistencias 4 (2005), Se habla español (2000), and Líneas aéreas (1998). His stories have also been published in literary publications, such as Etiqueta Negra, Los noveles, Paralelo Sur, Revista O, Camino Real, and Ventana abierta. He was awarded a doctorate in Spanish from the University of California at Santa Barbara. He is currently a professor of Hispanic Southwest Literature and Creative Writing, Department of Spanish and Portuguese, University of New Mexico. He has also been a professor at the University of Iowa, Penn State, Texas A & M, and he has taught classes at the University of Salamanca and the University of Alcalá de Henares.
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