Congratulations to Yuri Herrera for his new collection Ten Plants: Stories, published by Graywolf Press and translated from Spanish by Lisa Dillman. Although often set in the future or on distant planets, each story deals poignantly (and sometimes hilariously) with the present. In “The Conspirators,” Herrera comments on both language and colonization. When describing the depth of what was stolen from them, one character reveals, “‘They made our language theirs, said it was theirs and always had been, and then imposed it on us so we’d forget that it had been ours, turned it into a broad brush to paint us in whatever way they pleased.'”
Many are filled with strange, compelling contradictions and other haunting lines. In “The Obituarist,” the protagonist observes that “this empty street, just like every empty street in every other city, is teeming with people.” Each of Herrera’s stories bewilders, but always in a way that generates connections between seemingly disparate ideas. This collection is powerful and imaginative.
Utterly brilliant, hilarious, and original, these strange jewels. Anyone whose hand alights on this book and does not open it is missing out on the best work of our time.Deb olin unferth
Born in Actopan, Mexico, Yuri Herrera is the author of three novels, including Signs Preceding the End of the World, which was one of the Guardian’s “100 Best Books of the 21st Century” and won the Best Translated Book Award. He teaches at Tulane University in New Orleans.
Brilliant, ecstatic, and playful, Ten Planets is the work of one of the most original and prodigiously gifted writers at work today. . . . The infinite worlds of Ten Planets are further proof that Herrera is a writer of boundless talent.Katie Kitamura, author of Intimacies
To preorder Ten Planets: Stories, go here.