“Of what import are brief, nameless lives… to Galactus??” is the quote that opens the story in The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz. And when a book without pictures starts off with a quote from Galactus I assume it’s worth reading. So I did. And in this case I certainly wasn’t wrong.
It’s dark, hilarious, informative, heartbreaking and super nerdy. There are quite a few references inside to comics and movies that can be found in any good nerd’s possession… but not just for the sake of hat tipping. Everything ties somehow into the story of Oscar and his family. Even the opening quote could have easily been attributed to the book’s villain (real life former ruler of the Dominican Republic Rafael Trujillo) if you swapped his name for Galactus’s.
This book made me laugh but it also punched me in the gut. More than once. It’s awesome. Read it.