The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz

The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao

Things have never been easy for Oscar, a sweet but disastrously overweight ghetto nerd, a New Jersey romantic who dreams of becoming the Dominican J.R.R. Tolkien and, most of all, of finding love. But he may never get what he wants, thanks to the fuku – the ancient curse that has haunted Oscar’s family for generations, dooming them to prison, torture, tragic accidents, and, above all, ill-starred love. Oscar, still dreaming of his first kiss, is only its most recent victim – until the fateful summer that he decides to be its last.


This book was educational – I learned a lot about the dictatorial history of the Dominican Republic – but it wasn’t really all that compelling. It was exciting enough that I was pulled through it in less than a week, but I had no real relish in picking it up or even finishing it. I spent most of the time trying to figure out who the narrator was and why the style kept jumping all over the place. The high energy is the common thread, not the actual subject matter, which keeps this book from being truly great. Is it really a curse if you’re dumb enough to pursue a woman who’s engaged to a crooked cop? I guess it is for a nerd who can’t get a girlfriend. This book gets an extra half star for teaching me about Dominican history.