The Winner of the Tomas Rivera Book Prize
In J. L. Torres’s second story collection Migrations, the inaugural winner of the Tomás Rivera Book Prize, a “sucio” goes to an underground clinic for therapy to end his machista ways and is accidentally transitioned. Ex-gangbangers gone straight deal with a troubled, gifted son drawn to the gangsta lifestyle promoted by an emerging music called hip-hop. Dead and stuck “between somewhere and nowhere,” Roberto Clemente, the great Puerto Rican baseball icon, soon confronts the reason for his predicament. These stories take us inside the lives of self-exiles, unhomed and unhinged people, estranged from loved ones, family, culture, and collective history. Despite the effects of colonization of the body and mind, Puerto Ricans have survived beyond geography and form an integral part of the American mosaic.