11 May 2008

Luis Alberto Urrea

I've been listening to PRI shorts on NPR lately. I burn 5 or 6 of them to CD at a shot, and then listen to them in my car at my leisure when I'm on my way to work, on a long drive, out running errands; whatever. They've been making me want to write again, which is a good thing I think.

One of the stories that really moved me today was by a writer I'd never heard of before, Luis Alberto Urrea, called "Bid Farewell to Her Many Horses." It was a love story about a fairly generic white guy and a fairly generic Indian girl, with the device being that the story of the courtship and marriage are all told in a sort of posthumous retrospective. But the language was so beautiful, and the story and dialogue so simultaneously real and compelling that I was completely captivated by the first paragraph. (It didn't hurt that it was read by Robert Sean Leonard, the boyishly-handsome doomed Thespian of Dead Poet's Society as a teen and the unlucky-in-love oncologist of "House" of late.)

Here's the author's blog if any of you -- my vast but shy readership -- are so inspired by my post that you want to read more about him:


I plan to read "Bid Farewell to Her Many Horses" for myself, to find out whether it was the storytelling or Robert Sean Leonard that made it so compelling. But I probably won't be reading much of anything until this gig ends in 2009.

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