A rich variety of baseball fiction exists south of the Florida Straits and the Rio Grande, but almost none of it is available in English. These inventive and entertaining stories mix fan and fandom, baseball and politics, rural and urban life, sexism and poverty, the supernatural, the realistic, and the apocryphal. The collection includes stories from Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Mexico, as well as introduction that traces the evolution of baseball throughout the region and its culture.
"If baseball is really a metaphor for life, then Kill the Ámpaya—Cluster’s wonderful collection of Latin American baseball stories—is an astonishing record of its beauty and coarseness, redemption and tragedy. You don’t have to be a baseball fan to appreciate these stories and delight in this reading."
Achy Obejas, author of Ruins and The Tower of the Antilles and Other Stories
"These are stories we have lived . . . Some are funny, some cruel or violent, but in the end, they are part of our culture that makes us act the way we do. They make me think of the millions of stories that got lost behind us.”
Omar Vizquel, shortstop
"Baseball is in the soul of millions in Puerto Rico and the other countries that play the game with Latino flair. These stories are portraits of its place in our lives.”
Bengie Molina, catcher
"It’s time we recognized that Latin America is the soul of baseball, and Kill the Ámpaya! takes us straight to the heart of that soul.”
Scott Ostler, sportswriter, San Francisco Chronicle.
“A revelation! Baseball fans know how much passion and skill Latin American players bring to the game. Now, thanks to Kill the Ámpaya!, we learn that the same flair is on displayin Latin American baseball literature. To quote one of the many great lines in these fascinating stories, ‘This jonrón is for you.’”
Peter Abrahams, New York Times best-selling novelist, including The Fan.