Puerto Rico is the perfect place to lie out on the beach and do some summer reading. First off, it's a tiny island with a great number of beaches offering sun, sand, water, and perhaps even tranquility (we are talking about Puerto Rico here). Second, there are plenty of books from which to choose; try some of the bookstores in Río Piedras, San Juan, or, if you can't find an independent one, there are Borders in Plaza Las Américas, Carolina, and Mayagüez... I know, I know, you'd think that there wouldn't be too much Puerto Rican literature there, seeing as it's an American chain, but you'd be surprised. The last time I was there I bought a book of essays on Puerto Rico from the 50's for a dollar. Give it a shot if you'd like.
Anyways, here's a list of books from Puerto Rico that I've read, am reading, or wish I were (I have a lot more academic books on Puerto Rico and a few other subjects that I'll be reading as well, so some will have to wait...). Think of it as a starting point, I suppose.
- La casa de la laguna/The House on the Lagoon - Rosario Ferré... and other books by her (there are quite a few)
- La guaracha de Macho Camacho/Macho Camacho's Beat - Luis Rafael Sánchez
- Poetry by Julia de Burgos (there's a bilingual complete anthology of all her works on amazon.com here--the cover is not as ugly as it seems and the translations are great)
- Felices Días, Tío Sergio/Happy Days, Uncle Sergio - Magali García Ramis
- La Patografía - Ángel Lozada (Spanish only)
- When I Was a Puerto Rican/Cuando era una puertorriqueña - Esmeralda Santiago (my thoughts on this book later)
- The Rum Diary - Hunter S. Thompson (English only... as far as I know)
May the world be blessed with a relaxing beach visit and a good book!