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Story Review: The Dog Eaters by Leoncio P. Deriada

the dog eaters

It took me a really long while to finally pick this up and actually read it. From the title alone, any reader will have to assume the brutality of the would be subject. And I am not exactly brave enough for that. The question of whether I can write an unbiased review filled me in every attempt.

Victor and Mariana are impoverished couple, hardly making ends meet. With an eight-month old baby and another one, too soon, on the way, Mariana is desperate. But Victor is not showing any diligence. He spends most of his time chugging alcohol and feasting on dog meat with the neighbors, rather on making their family’s situation better.

Mariana sat on the topmost step of the stairs; she put her hands between her legs and stared blankly at the rusty rooftops in front of her. And for the first in all her life on the Artiaga Street, Mariana cried.

The story pictures the harsh reality of poverty. Deriada used a brutal subject to hammer the desperation in these living conditions. He also showed that there are people who choose being poor. Maybe not consciously, but the way they lead their everyday lives shows it. Escape is another choice. Sometimes people even resolve to killing to escape the desperate conditions of poverty.

Rating: 2/5 stars

Published, The Dog Eaters and Other Plays

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