Synopses & Reviews
The long-awaited first novel by the award-winning author of two impressive story collections explores the sinister side of desire in Bakersfield, California, circa 1959, when a famous director arrives to scout locations for a film about madness and murder at a roadside motel. Unfolding in much the same way that Hitchcock made Psycho—frame by frame, in pans, zooms, and close-ups—Mun~ozs re-creation of a vanished era takes the reader into places no camera can go, venturing into the characters private thoughts, petty jealousies, and unrealized dreams. The result is a work of stunning originality.
Bakersfield, California, in the late 1950s is a dusty, quiet town too far from Los Angeles to share that city's energy yet close enough to Hollywood to fill its citizens with the kinds of dreams they discover in the darkness of the movie theater. For Teresa, a young, aspiring singer who works at a shoe store, dreams lie in the music her mother shared with her, plaintive songs of love and longing. In Dan Watson, the most desirable young man in Bakersfield, she believes she has found someone to help her realize those dreams.
About the Author
Manuel Mun~ozs short story collection, The Faith Healer of Olive Avenue, was a finalist for the Frank OConnor International Short Story Award. He is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts literature fellowship and the prestigious Whiting Award, and is currently teaching creative writing at the University of Arizona in Tucson.