Our new Printers Row Journal Book of the Month selection is “This Is How You Lose Her” by Junot Díaz, due out Sept. 11. For the fans of his 2008 Pulitzer Prize-winning “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao,” it has been a long wait.
Díaz established himself in 1996 as one of the most exciting and entrancing voices of his generation with “Drown,” a story collection. Yunior, the narrator of “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao” and a central character in “Drown,” returns in “This Is How You Lose Her.”
The stories collected in “This Is How You Lose Her” are thematically tied together by love’s disappointments. One of Díaz’s great gifts as a fiction writer is his ability to create complex and endearing characters whom one might regard as macho or excessively romantic had they been rendered by a lesser writer.
Díaz’s fiction makes for great discussion, not only because of his astonishing ability to create dislocated characters and a sense of place, but also because of his pyrotechnic use of language. His keen ear for the rapid-fire rat-a-tat of conversation, for the life lived inside the head and heart, makes his work urgent and compelling.
We hope you’ll read along with “This Is How You Lose Her” and that you’ll join us on Sept. 12 when Díaz will appear talk with Mary Schmich at a Printers Row Live! event at Chase Auditorium. For tickets and details, visit chicagotribune.com/printersrow.