Monday, November 08, 2010

A sneak peek at “The Book of Want”

The University of Arizona Press’s website states: “Since 1994, the [press] has published exceptional literary work by Latina and Latino authors in its critically acclaimed Camino del Sol series. Through poetry, fiction, and essays, noted writers including Ray Gonzalez, Juan Felipe Herrera, Patricia Preciado Martin, Demetria Martinez, Virgil Suárez, Sergio Troncoso, and Luis Alberto Urrea have explored the rich variety of Latina/o experience in America, creating a dynamic portrait of this vital culture."

I am delighted that in March 2011, the University of Arizona Press will publish my first full-length novel, The Book of Want, as part of the Camino del Sol series. The proofs have been edited, the blurbs lined up, and the cover has been designed. My novel’s cover is adorned with a painting by the acclaimed artist, Gronk, whose "La Tormenta" has become an iconic figure and perfectly captures the spirit of my book.

What is The Book of Want about? Well, here’s a pithy description from the University of Arizona Press: “Maybe the Ten Commandments were just suggestions...When Moses descended Mount Sinai carrying the Ten Commandments, he never could have foreseen how one family in Los Angeles in the early twenty-first century would struggle to live by them. With an enchanting blend of social and magical realism, The Book of Want reveals what it means to be fully human.”

And here are some words of advance praise:

"These haunting, lyrical tales, woven into a seamless novel by Daniel A. Olivas, rise from the heart of his beloved Los Angeles, in that mythical place called the Borderlands, and lead the way in a new genre of superb American literature."

—Himilce Novas, author of Mangos, Bananas and Coconuts: A Cuban Love Story

"Daniel Olivas's The Book of Want gently skirts the edges of magical realism without (menos mal) succumbing fully to its retro tidal lure. Olivas is vitally engaged with the multiple voices and lives that make up a distinctively L.A.-centric Latinidad. A warm, funny, sensuous tale. ¡Muy readable!"

—Suzanne G. Chávez-Silverman, author of Scenes from la Cuenca de Los Angeles y otros Natural Disasters

"To read this sensuous and open-hearted novel is to enter a kind of heaven."

—Michael Nava, author of The Little Death

"Daniel Olivas has been steadily developing into one of the primary voices of Latino literature's new wave. The Book of Want is a major step forward in his art; a moving, vital narrative from a major American talent."

—Luis Alberto Urrea, author of The Hummingbird's Daughter

If you're a reviewer and would like an advance copy, please drop me an email with your name, mailing address, and publication you write for, and we will add you to our list. Please do this soon because we are in the process of finalizing the galleys for distribution to reviewers.

Finally, The Book of Want is now available for pre-order at your favorite bookstore or online.

Stay tuned…


Francisco Aragón said...

Congratulations! Gorgeous cover.

Manuel Ramos said...

Congratulations, Daniel. Hope to get my hands on your book as soon as it is available.

Daniel A. Olivas said...

Gracias, Francisco and Manuel. We are very excited about this little book. I hope people enjoy it.