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Six Kinds of Sky


This is an amazing collection of short stories. There are stories here that I’ll probably be thinking about for long after I’ve forgotten most of the books I’ve ever read, the TV I’ve watched, and the films I’ve seen. They range from pretty damn funny (“Mr. Mendoza’s Paintbrush”) to strong stuff like “A Day in the Life,” which chronicles the lives of an extended family of garbage pickers in Mexico City. “Father Returns from the Mountain” along with the afterword is part of Urrea’s ongoing records of the mythos of his father’s hometown, Rosario, Mexico.

If nothing else, pick up the book for the last story, “Bid Farewell to Her Many Horses.” A man goes to the South Dakota reservation where his wife had grown upand left so she could be with himfor her funeral. He remembers his early unthinking racism, the chance meeting with Joni Her Many Horses, and how the in years since she smiled less and less; drank more and more. It is more than this, less than this ... a story, like all good stories, that runs deep. Stories this good are a reason to get up in the morning.

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