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Justin Torres

Författare till We the Animals

4+ verk 1,449 medlemmar 76 recensioner 2 favoritmärkta

Om författaren

Foto taget av: Justin Torres at the 2012 National Book Festival By Slowking4 - Own work, GFDL 1.2,

Verk av Justin Torres

We the Animals (2011) 1,211 exemplar
Blackouts (2023) 226 exemplar
Crewelwork: Currency {story} (2021) 6 exemplar

Associerade verk

It Occurs to Me That I Am America: New Stories and Art (2018) — Bidragsgivare — 71 exemplar
The Best American Essays 2022 (2022) — Bidragsgivare — 54 exemplar
Wilde Stories 2012: The Year's Best Gay Speculative Fiction (2012) — Bidragsgivare — 23 exemplar
Pathetic Literature (2022) — Bidragsgivare — 21 exemplar
From Macho to Mariposa: New Gay Latino Fiction (2011) — Bidragsgivare — 11 exemplar


Allmänna fakta



Clearly inspired by [b:Kiss of the Spider Woman|588242|Kiss of the Spider Woman|Manuel Puig||765288] (1976) by Manuel Puig, I enjoyed this novel’s recreation of the tender, caring bond that develops between two rather different men in Puig’s novel as they pass the time in a small cell-like space (literally a cell in Puig, figuratively here) talking, imagining life through the lens of film, and through being their true selves countering a dominant ideology that pathologizes queerness.

Juan, an elder man on his deathbed, wants his young visitor to take up the work of recording queer history and identity begun in a lengthy old research report in his possession, which was co-opted and misused for their own purposes by straight male doctors decades ago. Reflecting this erasure, the volumes themselves are mostly blacked out and images of its pages are printed here in the style of creating found poetry, which is not usually something I have much interest in but it works quite well in this context. And as Juan fades into delirium near the end of the novel, reality is further erased until the arrival of the ultimate “blackout”, if I may.

There is not so much a plot though as a rich and complex characterization of these two men and the bond that was created between them over only eighteen days they shared being forced into a mental institution prior to the younger’s suicide attempt and subsequent departure, that then survived a decade of no contact, and which is now revived and developed after the unnamed narrator has tracked down the dying Juan in his small, dark room.
Juan was dying, but only in the light, and only in the body. In the dark, his voice filled the room, sharper and more alive than I.

Through the skillful dialogue that is most of the book, Torres shows these two men sharing their lives with each other and in their relationship demonstrating the love of neighbor that should be striven for even as we often come up short.

… (mer)
lelandleslie | 2 andra recensioner | Feb 24, 2024 |
One of the most creative books I have read in some time. The central figures are the narrator and an elderly gentleman he lives with. Both are homosexual and the book focuses on a period when this lifestyle was totally underground. Torres is a wonderful writer engaging the reader in his episodic writing style with many visual aids. The two recall many books and movies that profoundly affected them. As a heterosexual reader I was thoroughly taken by the characters and story in this book.
muddyboy | 2 andra recensioner | Feb 18, 2024 |
the best thing is that it is short.Bleak and depressing. Not my kind of book at all.
hmonkeyreads | 68 andra recensioner | Jan 25, 2024 |
This book won the National Book Award and after reading it, I can say that the judges really had no choice in the matter. It manages to be intelligent, innovative and full of heart, which is a lot for one book. The scaffolding for this novel is two men in a room, a small room in an old building in New Mexico, the curtains drawn. Juan is dying and his friend, who he last saw decades ago in a mental health facility, has come to spend these last days with him in this over-heated room, as they talk about their own pasts and read a bit from an old book called Sex Variants, where each page has been altered, words blacked out, making a new text. The also discuss the person who spear-headed the book's creation, her history and how she convinced a male doctor to be the head of the project, because she couldn't get traction as a woman, and how she was ultimately disappointed in what resulted.

This is the kind of book that ranges far and wide while staying in the same place. It's clever and intelligent, with the erasures revealing more than the original text did. It shares a format with Puig's Kiss of the Spider Woman, a connection that Torres points out. It's a novel that deserves to be read slowly and ideally as a physical book, the object itself playing a part in how well this book holds together, with illustrations and photos enhancing the story being told.
… (mer)
3 rösta
RidgewayGirl | 2 andra recensioner | Jan 12, 2024 |



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