“This stunning collection of stories is…another front-line report on the ambivalent promise of the American Dream.”
San Francisco Chronicle

“Spare, tense, powerful…searing snapshots from the rocky, dangerous road that leads his characters to adulthood…His stories are so engaging, so compulsively readable, that we have to make ourselves pause to admire his sly lyricism, nervy assurance, and clam command of his craft.”
—Francine Prose, Elle

“Díaz deserves to be singled out for the distinctiveness and caliber of his voice, and for his ability to sum up a range of cultural and cross-cultural experiences in a few sharp images…These 10 finely achieved short stories reveal a writer who will still have something to say after he has used up his own youthful experiences and heartaches”
The Philadelphia Inquirer

“Like Raymond Carver, Díaz transfigures disorder and disorientation with a
rigorous sense of form…[He] wrings the heart with finely calibrated
The New York Times Book Review

“Riveting…Captures the bleak peripheral existence of suburban people of color in groundbreaking fashion.”
—Village Voice

“Talent this big will always make noise…Díaz has the dispassionate eye of a journalist and the tongue of a poet.”

“Graceful and raw and painful and smart … The pages turn and all of a sudden you’re done and you want more.”
Boston Globe

“Junot Díaz’s stories are as vibrant, tough, unexotic, and beautiful as their settings – Santa Domingo, Dominican Neuva York, the immigrant neighborhoods of industrial New Jersey with their gorgeously polluted skyscapes. Places and voices new to our literature yet classically American: coming-of-age stories full of wild humor, intelligence, rage, and piercing tenderness. And this is just the beginning. Díaz is going to be a giant of American prose.”
—Francisco Goldman

“Ever since Diaz began publishing short stories in venues as prestigious as The New Yorker, he has been touted as a major new talent, and his debut collection affirms this claim. Born and raised in Santo Domingo, Díaz uses the contrast between his island homeland and life in New York City and New Jersey as a fulcrum for his trenchant tales. His young male narrators are teetering into precarious adolescence. For these sons of harsh or absent fathers and bone-weary, stoic mothers, life is an unrelenting hustle. In Santo Domingo, they are sent to stay with relatives when the food runs out at home; in the States, shoplifting and drugdealing supply material necessities and a bit of a thrill in an otherwise exhausting and frustrating existence. There is little affection, sex is destructive, conversation strained, and even the brilliant beauty of a sunset is tainted, its colors the product of pollutants. Keep your eye on Díaz; his first novel is on the way.”