Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Miki's A New Fan of Tom Wolfe

"Wow, am I glad this book landed in my lap! This was my first experience with a work by Tom Wolfe.  I was totally amazed by how simple, yet brilliant, his writing is.  

Back to Blood, set in Miami, Florida, is the story of a race, culture, art, crime, love, and freedom.  Nestor Comacho, a Cuban cop, is the main character in this novel.  As Nestor tries to climb the precinct ladder, he commits a daring act to bring in an attempted Cuban immigrant into custody.  This proves to win him points at work, but completely shatters his reputation back in his family home and neighborhood.  

After this incident, Nestor seems to be a magnet for press and for other huge cases.  Very quickly, Nestor begins to see that his race and the races of those who live in his world begin to matter.  He no longer sees himself as American.  He must now see himself as Cuban.  And he must see others as white, black,brown, Haitian, Russian, Cuban, etc.  

As Nestor's 'melting pot' begins to separate, other characters begin to develop and introduce themselves into Nestor's world.  Somehow, Wolfe deals with so many stereotypes, but in the best way.  He shows the falsities and the truths.  He also shows how our use of stereotypes can have a profound effect on our decisions and actions.  

Yes, race is a huge part of this book, but it is so much more than that.  This is a love story, a story of heart break, a story of identity, and this is a crime novel. Not only do I recommend this novel, but I highly recommend the audio book which was narrated by Lou Diamond Phillips."
Miki with Jeffrey Eugenides

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