The Hero of Blind Pig Island and Other Island Stories by Jimmy Olsen



Life usually does not set one single tone. Life usually ranges from funny to tragic; from interesting to intriguing.

Life is usually made of a lot of single small stories, sometimes related, sometimes not. You sit down at the dinner table on Christmas night and you ask your family: “Hey, do you remember that man who…?” And so your family has a collection of small stories; you laugh at most of them, and you feel sorry for some others.

Reading Jimmy Olsen’s book of small stories “The Hero of Blind Pig Island and Other Island Stories” I felt the same way; some tales were funny and some were real sad. Some of them had happy endings with unlikely heroes who were smart and were able to twist fate to their advantage. In some other cases, no matter how hard the character worked, her fate got her in the end. Isn’t life like that? For some reason some people make it, and for some reason, some people don’t. And that’s just life. And you gather together at Christmas and New Year’s Eve to talk about them and about their fates. And you wonder…

Jimmy Olsen spent a great deal of his life in the Dominican Republic diving. His short stories in this book clearly show his background and his expertise in the subject.

Jimmy was able to make me laugh as well as to make me feel sad. His book takes advantage of the short stories format to give you a little of everything and keep you interested, and Jimmy shows that he is able to carry out the mission, regardless of the tone of the story.

If you are a busy person with no time to commit to a great lengthy novel, this book will keep you entertained with stories about the sea, the islands and the people who stay close to them.

You can buy Jimmy’s book at Amazon here.

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Looking for America and other stories by Yvonne Spence

looking for america, Yvonne Spence

(La reseña en Español está en la parte inferior)

Yvonne Spence paints.  She draws beautifully crafted portraits of real people. And while you are reading her paintings, you wonder “How does she do it?”

“If you look hard enough, you can see America,” is the first sentence in her book.

It doesn´t take a lot of reading before you realize you are facing a unique body of work, where every word has been carefully chosen to manufacture a sentence; where all those sentences have been delicately pondered, considered, moved, re-moved, erased and written again in the long process of creating a beautiful work of art.

“Sure enough,” you think after reading the first story, “She wrote about a girl; she only needed to remember her own childhood.”

Then she slaps you on the face with a story about an old man. And you have to face the fact that she did not write it remembering that time when she was an old man. “Damn,” you think, “How can she even be that good?”

You try to read it slowly, try to make it last. Yet, you can’t. You end up reading everything in one single afternoon. You debate with yourself: “What is she trying to say?”; “Is this written right?”; “This can’t be right”; “No, wait. She did that on purpose.”; “Is she playing games with my mind?”; “She is playing games with my mind! Nobody does that!”; “Why is she even saying that?”

As you read, you realize some stories (or is it all of them?) are related. You marvel at the way she is able to capture the feelings of young and old people, males and females, soldiers and housewives, farmers and eccentrics.

Reading her, I was reminded of the wonderful books “Corazón tan blanco” from Javier Marías, “Mal de Amores” from Angeles Mastretta or “Cuentos de Eva Luna” from Isabel Allende.

If you are looking for a book with lots of action and happy endings, you may be better off looking for some other works. If you are looking for something to think or to cry about, you are right at home.

At the end of her book, Yvonne puts a little fragment from her new novel “Drawings in Sand.” Like the waiter who meets you when you are leaving the restaurant after the meal of your life, she is saying “come again soon.”

Damn, Yvonne! I will come back. And when I do… I will like to have some more of the same, please.

Thank you very much!

Our mission is to help English writing authors reach new markets in other languages. If you have an eBook in English we can help you reach the Latino community, translating your work to Spanish. Contact us at or at

Looking for America and other stories por Yvonne Spence

looking for america, Yvonne Spence

Yvonne Spence pinta. Dibuja hermosos retratos de personas reales. Y mientras estás leyendo sus pinturas, te preguntas cómo lo hace.

“Si miras bien, puedes ver América” es la primera frase de su libro.

No se necesita leer mucho para darse cuenta de que uno está frente a un trabajo único, donde cada palabra ha sido cuidadosamente escogida para fabricar una oración; donde todas esas oraciones han sido delicadamente escogidas, consideradas, movidas, removidas, borradas y escritas de nuevo dentro del largo proceso de crear una bella obra de arte.

“Claro,” te dices después de leer su primer historia, “Ella escribió acerca de una niña; solo necesitaba recordar su propia infancia.”

Entonces Yvonne te golpea en la cara con una historia acerca de un viejo. Y tienes que enfrentar el hecho de que ella no lo escribió mientras recordaba aquélla última vez en que fue un viejo. “Demonios,” piensas, “¿Cómo puede ser tan buena?

Tratas de leer el libro lentamente, para que te dure. Pero, no puedes. Acabas leyendo todo en una sola tarde. Mientras lo haces, te debates contigo mismo: “¿Qué está tratando de decir?”; “¿Esto está bien escrito?”; “Esto no puede estar bien”; “No, espera, lo hizo a propósito” ; “¿Está jugando conmigo?”; “¡Está jugando conmigo! ¡Nadie me hace eso!”; “Ni siquiera sé porqué está diciendo eso.”

Mientras lees te das cuenta de que algunas historias (¿o son todas?) están relacionadas. Te maravillas de la manera en que puede capturar los sentimientos de jóvenes y viejos, de hombres y mujeres, de soldados y esposas, de granjeros y excéntricos.

El leerla me recordó otros libros maravillosos como “Corazón tan blanco” de Javier Marías, “Mal de Amores” de Ángeles Mastretta o “Cuentos de Eva Luna” de Isabel Allende.

Si estás buscando un libro con mucha acción y finales felices, estarás mejor leyendo otros trabajos. Pero si estás buscando algo que te haga pensar o llorar, estás justo en casa.

Al final de su libro, Yvonne nos regala un pequeño fragmento de su nueva novela “Drawings in Sand.” Como el mesero que te despide en la puerta del restorán después de que has tenido la mejor comida de tu vida, ella nos dice “vuelve pronto.”

¡Demonios, Yvonne! ¡Claro que volveré! Y cuando vuelva… cuando lo haga… Quiero un poco más de lo mismo, por favor.

¡Muchas gracias!

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