Oscar Hijuelos

Easton Press Oscar Hijuelos books

The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love - signed modern classic - 2007


Author Oscar Hijuelos

Oscar Hijuelos (August 24, 1951 – October 12, 2013) was a Cuban-American novelist, best known for his novel The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love, which won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1990. Born in New York City to Cuban immigrant parents, Hijuelos drew upon his cultural heritage and experiences in much of his work.

The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love explores the lives of two Cuban brothers, Nestor and Cesar Castillo, who emigrate to the United States in the 1940s and become musicians, achieving fame for their mambo music. The novel is celebrated for its rich depiction of Cuban-American culture, as well as its exploration of themes such as love, music, and the immigrant experience.

Hijuelos wrote several other novels, including Our House in the Last World, The Fourteen Sisters of Emilio Montez O'Brien, and Mr. Ives' Christmas. His works often delved into the complexities of identity, family, and the blending of cultures.

Oscar Hijuelos passed away on October 12, 2013, at the age of 62, leaving behind a legacy of literary contributions that explored the nuances of the Cuban-American experience in the United States.

The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love

When it was first published in 1989, The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love became an international bestselling sensation, winning rave reviews and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. To celebrate its 20th anniversary, the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel that changed the landscape of American literature returns with a new afterword by Oscar Hijuelos.

It's 1949, and two young Cuban musicians make their way from Havana to the grand stage of New York City. It is the era of mambo, and the Castillo brothers, workers by day, become stars of the dance halls by night, where their orchestra plays the lush, sensuous, pulsing music that earns them the title "Mambo Kings." This is their moment of youth, exuberance, love, and freedom a golden time that decades later is remembered with nostalgia and deep affection.

Oscar Hijuelos's portrait of the Castillo brothers, their families, their fellow musicians and lovers, and their triumphs and tragedies recreates the sights and sounds of an era in music and an unsung moment in American life. Exuberantly celebrated from the moment it was published in 1989, The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1990, making Hijuelos the first Hispanic recipient of the award. It remains a perennial bestseller, with the story's themes of cultural fusion and identity still relevant today.

Cuban brothers Nestor and Cesar Camillo come to New York City in 1949 with dreams of becoming famous Mambo musicians. This memorable novel traces the arc of the two brothers' lives one charismatic and macho, the other soulful and sensitive from Havana to New York, from East Coast clubs and dance halls to the heights of musical fame.

An international bestseller and the 1990 Pulitzer Prize winner for fiction, The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love was made into a popular movie in 1992 starring Antonio Banderas and Armand Assante. With a new afterword by Oscar Hijuelos, this book has stood the test of time as a groundbreaking work of American literature.

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