J. L. Torres, "Migrations" (LA Review of Books, 2021)

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Migrations (LA Review of Books, 2021) is a collection of short stories by the Puerto Rican born writer and now retired university professor J. L. Torres. Each story condenses a bit of the experience of a cross section of Puerto Rico: the rich who treat it like a playground, the stereotypical macho men, the shanty town dwellers. The ramifications of the stories are deep and the varied tales range from climate change and the destruction of natural ecosystems by tourism, to the Puerto Ricans of the diaspora who struggle in dysfunctional families and who long to be part of the mainstream but have weathered the subtle racism of American society that has taken a toll on their inner lives. Torres’s stories bring alive Puerto Rico to us, its natural beauty but also try to show the colonial economy that the country is.

Minni Sawhney is a professor of Hispanic Studies at the University of Delhi.

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