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Set in vibrant, multicultural Miami, “The Last Flight of
Luis Balboa” is an absorbing collection of short stories
from a gifted writer. Gonzalo Barr captures this international
hub city in all its roiling guises, from the opulence of South
Beach to the ferocity of Little Havana. Barr introduces us to unforgettable
– an unscrupulous newscaster, a Lincoln Road bar manager,
a beautiful but cruel teenaged heartbreaker, and the title character,
a suicidal Latin pop star – in situations that teem with
humor and brutality, absurdity and poignance. This remarkable debut
offers a vivid portrait of a city defined by a blur of cultures.
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Times Literary Supplement
short story collection...”
"Gonzalo Barr's pitch and timbre is absolutely perfect...the stories sparkle
with daily ritual, along with the bonus (beyond pleasure) of a spirit-cleansing
"Barr...has a clear knack for generating fresh and fertile scenarios...[His]
list of high-quality premises lengthens as the book does."
"Set in Miami, these nine stories are an entertaining end-of-the-mojito-season
read. The first seven tales are amusing enough to tide you over till the last
two, more intricate gems, including Gonzalo Barr's title story, 'The Last Flight
of Jose Luis Balboa,' about three people whose lives become interconnected,
a la director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu's films."
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"Confronted with this most inexplicable of cities, Barr's characters have
the courage to move and get on with their lives, no matter how bizarre, painful
or even tragic the circumstances of those lives may be."
"Barr demonstrates fine storytelling with a good ear for nuance"
“Engaging, funny, highly enjoyable...With their deceptively
modest authority and just as deceptively easy charm, these stories
draw you in.”
— from the foreword by Francine
Prose, author of A Changed Man
. . . Stories that can't be stopped, that need to be told. Gonzalo
Barr's ear for dialogue and eye for character are unfailing. Each
story illuminates yet another corner of the human heart."
— Julia Alvarez, author of Saving
"A mesmerizing collection of the first order. It’s
hilarious and it’s harrowing. The stories here are exhilarating
to read; some are breathtaking and achingly beautiful. This is
a dazzling literary achievement."
— John Dufresne, author of Johnny