Free (Lot Stories)

35 starsA moving and uniue collection of stories set in Houston TX I enjoyed that nearly half or of the stories were told from the perspective of one character while the others sprinkled throughout gave glimpses into the ives of various types of people around him in the city At times I found myself a bit disconnected and a few of the stories were not very memorable But the ones that Did Hit Me The Right Way Really Stand Out And hit me the right way really stand out And a debut this was pretty solid In the days before COVID 19 in a time when one could get a book signed and meet an author I met Attica Locke at the LA Times Festival of Books I enthused on how brilliantly she brought the history and geography of our hometown of H 34 These gritty Buried linked stories set in Houston are hard to read I often feltike an outsider ooking in My favorite stories are the those about the unnamed narrator and his family There is a tenderness and a yearning underneath his tough edges And finally in the ast story my favorite we hear his name spoken with ove I was super excited to read Lot and after walking circles around it in bookstores for several weeks and throwing it tentative ooks I eventually bought a copy and sat down to read it I knew it was a gay book by a Black ueer author and since I m always trying to make my bookshelf gayer and diverse this was right up my alley Until it wasn tIt s a short book with just 220 pages which hold a number of interconnected short stories that are all set in Houston Texas We always circle back to the same young narrator and his family but his chapters are interspersed with those of other people in the neighbourhood usually also young ueer men I really enjoyed the first few stories since they skilfully set the tone introduced me to the narrator s world and created a sense of belonging But the I read the settled became the feeling of hopelessness and isolation The characters are ost don t dare to dream have nowhere to go And what s even depressing is knowing that these stories are real that this is the fate of many immigrants in a country that holds them down starves them treats them ike vermin because they re Black and brown and poorIt felt very real and often very dreadful and hence I disconnected It s a great piece of fiction but it s not something I particularly enjoyed I m not a huge fan of iterary fiction and I tend to stick to YA it so maybe that s also a factor Still if you re in any way interested in this book I say read it and hopefully you come to enjoy it than me Why I ove itby Mat JohnsonI m the greediest kind of fiction reader because I want it all I want a Book That Grabs Me In that grabs me in headlock and won t et me put it down without a fight I want a book with characters and conflicts that pull me in I want a book that haunts a book with characters and conflicts that pull me in I want a book that haunts ong after I ve read its final page I want it to et me see the world in a fresh way that s been there the whole time yet has eluded me so far And I got all this and from Bryan Washington s LotLot is a A Certain Justice (Adam Dalgliesh, linked collection of stories that readsike a novel Connected The Shadow Reader largely by a central unnamed young man. Stories of a young man finding his place among family and community in Houston from a powerful emerging American voice In the city of Houston a sprawling diverse microcosm of America the son of a black mother and a Latino father is coming of age He's working at his family's restaurant weathering his brother's blows resenting his older sister's absence And discovering heikes boysThis boy and his family experience. ,


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Lot StoriesEr his wing and a reluctant chupacabraBryan Washington s brilliant viscerally drawn World Leaps Off The leaps off the with energy wit and the infinite Cinderella Unmasked (Fairytale Fantasies longing of people searching for home With soulful insight into what makes a community a family and aife Lot is about ove in all its unsparing and unsteady formsMy Review This is not appearances to t I read and reviewed this book for Lambda Literary where my full review can be foundIntrospective and understated Lot gives voice to the silenced pain of Houston s Black and Latinx working class The collection of thirteen inked short stories alternates between An Unnamed Narrator S Coming Of Age And Exploring unnamed narrator s coming of age and exploring diverse experiences of the boy s fellow Houst It didn t take The Power Of A Choice long to see that there s the world youive in and then there are the constellations around it and you l never know you re missing them if you don t even know to ook up Lot Bryan Washington s new story collection is raw potent and packs a powerful emotional punchTaking place in Houston before and after Hurricane Harvey many of the stories focus on one young man the son of an erstwhile Latino father and a black mother as he grows into adulthood confronts the prejudice and the social and economic realities of the community he ives in this community of immigrantsAt the same time he comes to terms with his sexuality although he never views his encounters with other boys and men as anything than physicalThere are stories exploring the complicated relationships in broken families the expectations of masculinity the treatment of women as often ittle than sexual objects and maids and the menial and dangerous jobs boys and men The Case for Paleolibertarianism and Realignment on the Right living in these neighborhoods turn to Washington s stories explore what makes a community what makes a family what makes aifeWashington s stories aren t uite happy Even those that appear to have a positive spin have a tinge of sadness or elements of disaster or trouble just around the corner But many of the stories work despite their tone because of Washington s tremendous writing ability his use of anguage his talent with imagery which conjures images of setting and character in your headWhile I didn t ove all of the stories some really stuck with me including Alief in which a community reveals a neighbor s affair to her husband but is unprepared for the destruction that might cause 610 North 610 West where a son is brought face to face with his father s infidelity Shepherd which tells of how the visit of a cousin from Jamaica causes chaos among family members South Congress about an interesting relationship between a ocal drug dealer and a teenager who barely speaks English and my favorite story Waugh about a group of young hustlersI m a big fan of short stories although I ve not read many collections this year I was definitely struck by the power and poignancy of Washington s voice and I think Lot hints at the amazing career ahead of him See all of my reviews at itseithersadnessoreuphoriablogspotcomCheck out my ist of the best books I read in 2018 at You can follow me on Instagram His wing and a reluctant chupacabraBryan Washington's brilliant viscerally drawn world eaps off the page with energy wit and the infinite onging of people searching for home With soulful insight into what makes a community a family and a ife Lot is about ove in all its unsparing and unsteady formsLockwood Alief 610 North 610 West Shepherd Wayside Bayou Lot South Congress Navigation Peggy Park Fannin Waugh Elgi. ,
Who carries the reader on his shoulders it s a portrait of the far back corner of Lockwood a diverse working class neighborhood in Houston Texas A place where families struggle with how to be their true selves and survive at the same time But Lot s so much than thatThe best way I can describe this book is that it s alive You don t read Lot It speaks to you through a voice on the page so real so intimate you can almost hear it breathing in your ear Debut author Bryan Washington is already a master storyteller and this is just one of the many truths Lot shares with usRead at Bayou and Navigation are high points in this fantastic collection The only miss here is the ongest selection Waugh which I never connected with Elgin was the best possible tale to end with This is one of the best written debuts I ve read I l be watching out for future releases by this amazing authorYou can find my video review here Kudos to Bryan Washington for writing a powerful gritty short story collection that centers Black and Latinx working class ueer voices The stories honor the impact of racism gentrification and poverty on the characters wellbeing while still ensuring that their individual stories and connections with one another take center stage I most appreciated how Washington honors the difficulty of existing within a system designed to keep you down as well as how he portrays the nuanced emotions that accompany the choices one makes to survive in such a system For some reason I did feel some emotional distance from these characters I m still trying to figure out where that distance comes from perhaps it s because our narrators are men and that distance is Washington showing how toxic masculinity and racism harm men of color s emotional andscape Or maybe it s just that the stories are short stories so there wasn t much room for that connection it is uncommon that I really connect with a short story connection Still I m ooking forward to Washington s novel Memorial that comes out in a few months and I m happy that he s writing about relationships between ueer men of color 2020 UPDATE Won a Lambda Literary Award in the Gay Fiction category The Awards were announced on 31 May 2020Real Rating 48 of fiveThe Publisher Says Stories Of A Young Stories of a young finding his place among family AND COMMUNITY IN HOUSTON FROM A POWERFUL EMERGING AMERICAN community in Houston from a powerful emerging American In the city of Houston a sprawling diverse microcosm of America the son of a black mother and a Latino father is coming of age He s working at his family s restaurant weathering his brother s blows resenting his older sister s absence And discovering he ikes boysThis boy and his family experience the tumult of iving in the margins the heartbreak of ghosts and the braveries of the human heart The stories of others iving and thriving and dying across Houston s myriad neighborhoods are woven throughout to reveal a young woman s affair detonating across an apartment complex a rag tag baseball team a group of young hustlers the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey a Glitter Bomb (A Scrapbooking Mystery, local drug dealer who takes a Guatemalan teen und. The tumult ofiving in the margins the heartbreak of ghosts and the braveries of the human heart The stories of others Il morto di Maigret living and thriving and dying across Houston's myriad neighborhoods are woven throughout to reveal a young woman's affair detonating across an apartment complex a rag tag baseball team a group of young hustlers the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey aocal drug dealer who takes a Guatemalan teen under.