Cover image for Six kinds of sky : a collection of short fiction
Six kinds of sky : a collection of short fiction
Urrea, Luis Alberto.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
El Paso, Tex. : Cinco Puntos Press, [2002]

Physical Description:
146 pages ; 23 cm
Mr. Mendoza's paintbrush -- Taped to the sky -- First light -- A day in the life -- Father returns from the mountain -- Bid farewell to her many horses.
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"Home isn't just a place, it is also a language."

Born in Tijuana, the son of an Anglo woman and a Mexican father, Urrea says that "Home isn't just a place, it is also a language." In these six stories--each wandering beneath different kinds of sky, from the thick Mazatlan starry night to the wide open spaces of the Sioux Nation in South Dakota--Urrea maps the spiritual geography of what he calls "home."

"I always thought Luis Urrea was six skies rolled into one (I mean that in a good way), and this book proves that he speaks with a multitude of passionate, powerful and hilarious voices. This book is a beautiful kind of crazy."--Sherman Alexie

"With this new collection of stories, Luis Urrea makes the short list of essential American writers. His glittering landscapes, which warp and ennoble the human spirit, bring to mind the work of Salman Rushdie. I found myself going back and rereading whole passages; Urrea's got a way with words that raises the bar for the rest of us. What a marvel of a book!"--Demetria Mart#65533;nez

"Urrea goes in for the big picture, and there seems to be no world he cannot capture. He writes with wit and ingenuity, and the stories possess a powerful sense of acceleration. With each story I was transported to an intense and fully imagined world."--Robert Boswell

Luis Urrea is a novelist, essayist and poet. His books have received The American Book Award for non-fiction, 1998, and The Western States Book Award for Poetry, 1994, and The New York Times named his non-fiction Across the Wire a Notable Book of the Year, 1993. Luis lives in Chicago.

Author Notes

Luis Alberto Urrea is author of widely acclaimed novel The Hummingbird's Daughter and 2005 Pulitzer Prize finalist for nonfiction for The Devil's Highway. A member of the Latino Literature Hall of Fame, Luis was born in Tijuana, Mexico to a Mexican father and an American mother. This is his first graphic novel and Young Adult title.

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Urrea, best known for his hard-hitting nonfiction (Across the Wire; Nobody's Son), proves once again to be an eloquent and elegiac spokesman for the down-and-out and the disaffected in this collection of six stories whose settings range from Mexico to the Sioux nation in South Dakota. His protagonists are usually Hispanics and Native Americans whose struggles are documented most touchingly in one of the two longer stories, "A Day in the Life," which describes the plight of a poverty-stricken group of garbage pickers whose lives are torn apart by tragedy after they are forced to move from Mexico City to Tijuana. Urrea turns his attention to the brokenhearted in "Taped to the Sky," in which a man who takes to the road after his wife leaves him breaks down in the middle of Wyoming, where he learns the reason for his journey from the Native American man who helps him. He offers a different perspective on the Native American experience in "Bid Farewell to Her Many Horses," which describes the sorrow of a man who marries a Sioux woman who succumbs to alcoholism, while "Father Returns From the Mountain" is a touching story of a man's attempt to come to terms with his father's death in an auto accident. Urrea is a poetic writer who draws strong characters and wears his literary compassion on his sleeve, and he uses all of his gifts to full advantage here. (Feb.) Forecast: This is a minor outing for Urrea, whose fiction has made less of a splash than his nonfiction. A breakout may be in store for him soon, though Little, Brown is publishing his next novel, which it secured as part of a two-book, six-figure deal. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Table of Contents

Mr. Mendoza's Paintbrushp. 1
Taped to the Skyp. 13
First Lightp. 31
A Day in the Lifep. 67
Father Returns from the Mountainp. 107
Bid Farewell to Her Many Horsesp. 115
An Afterword: Amazing Grace: Story And Writerp. 129