Juan Vidal appears in the following:
Saturday, September 20, 2014
A Little Lumpen Novelita is an intoxicating tale of a teenage girl who struggles to stay afloat. It cements Roberto Bolano's place as the most commanding Latin American writer of the last few decades.
Friday, September 05, 2014
Critic Juan Vidal recalls the power of protest poetry in days past, and wonders why poets no longer seem to be on the front lines of outrage. Have they stopped speaking, or have we stopped listening?
Saturday, August 30, 2014
The great Argentinian writer Julio Cortázar was born 100 years ago this week; while Cortázar is known for the surreal masterpiece Hopscotch, critic Juan Vidal says it's his poetry that resonates.
Saturday, August 30, 2014
Oxfam is scoring the 10 biggest food companies on a scale of 1 to 10 on a host of issues, from worker rights to climate change. But will promises translate into concrete changes?
Thursday, August 28, 2014
When the Colombian actress appeared in a widely derided stunt at the Emmys, much of the attendant outrage centered on her very prominent image. Juan Vidal argues this lets Hollywood off the hook.
Sunday, August 17, 2014
Critic Juan Vidal has an appreciation of the hymn — its rhythm, sonorous language, discipline and structure. "No matter where you stand on heaven and hell," he writes, "there is power in a hymn."
Saturday, July 19, 2014
It's the book critic's eternal dilemma: how do you fit all that reading into your daily life? Juan Vidal has an unusual solution: he gets his reading done in bars, preferably dark bars at mid-day.
Thursday, June 19, 2014
As Colombia's national team prepares to take the field again in the 2014 World Cup, critic (and proud Colombian-American) Juan Vidal muses on soccer, literature and national identity.
Saturday, June 07, 2014
Many readers know and love One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera. But critic Juan Vidal suggests you not overlook Gabriel Garcia Marquez's dynamic, poetic short stories.
Thursday, May 08, 2014
The late Brazilian author Hilda Hilst's With My Dog-Eyes chronicles a mathematics professor's descent into madness after a mystical vision. Critic Juan Vidal says it's a pleasure to see and read.
Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Issue 46 of McSweeney's Quarterly Concern showcases crime fiction from all over Latin America, with new stories from writers like Alejandro Zambra. Reviewer Juan Vidal calls it rousing and essential.
Sunday, March 16, 2014
The NYRB Classics imprint has reissued William Gass's 1976 raucous philosophical inquiry into the color blue. Reviewer Juan Vidal says it's more an experience to be had than a book to be read.
Tuesday, February 04, 2014
Brothers Boris and Arkady Strugatsky originally published their sci-fi classic Definitely Maybe in 1974. Now, a new translation restores cuts made by Soviet censors to this subversive tale of scientists exploring a reluctant universe. Reviewer Juan Vidal says "you'll laugh, you'll look around suspiciously, you'll throw the text across the room."
Tuesday, January 21, 2014
Japanese author Takashi Hiraide's The Guest Cat has just been released in English; it's a layered novel within a novel, centered on a workaholic couple who become enraptured by their neighbors' playful little cat. Reviewer Juan Vidal says "even dog lovers will relate" to the story.
Sunday, December 29, 2013
Poet Federico Garcia Lorca's life was cut short during the Spanish Civil War, but he left behind a rich legacy of poetry and drama. Reviewer Juan Vidal says the best poetry in translation to come out this year is a new collection of Lorca's verse, translated by writers who were deeply influenced by him.
Sunday, December 22, 2013
Juan Vidal recommends three Latin American masterpieces that were translated this year: a boundary-pushing novella, a noir tale of an assassination plot and a complex exploration of identity and history. There are no noble heroes in these pages — instead, they feature hapless, struggling souls in search of meaning.