Three Short Stories from Edmundo Paz Soldán at the Boston Review

The Boston Review has three short stories from Edmundo Paz Soldán. He is a Bolivian writer with a fairly long oeuvre of short stories and books. He first came to my attention last year when his short story collection Billy Ruth was published to glowing reviews in Spain. I haven’t ready any of his work but this is a great opportunity to read a writer who is well respected.

Dictator and Cards
In this one, anyway, the dictator Joaquin Iturbide owned a greeting card factory and held the monopoly on card sales in the country, and one day decided to declare June 26th Friendship Day, and the cards made for this day had such unexpected success with the public, creating such spectacular gains for the company, the dictator declared August 14th Jealousy Day, which was a success as well. Of its own volition, success bred success, and in less than five years every day of the year had been taken—there was Bitterness Day and Unfaithful Girlfriend Day and Great Grandparents Day, Loving Husbands Who Actually Hate Day and Onan Enthusiasts Day, the Day of Those Who Sleep with the Help, the Day of Readers of Marquis de Sade, and the Day of They Who Dream About Centaurs…