In Infamies, Alejandro Merizalde explores the wounds of his past, however grievous they may be, because he knows that it’s our wounds that make us unique, lead us to the source of our identity. In his pages, nothing is beyond interrogation. No one—not himself, not God—is above suspicion. What he discovers is that, if we can’t heal our histories—are we ever really done with the past?—at least we can make a form of our nostalgia so that we may be better equipped to step into the future. The speaker of these pieces is continually displaced: from his homeland, from others, from himself. But he’s not willing to let isolation have the final word. The book represents an attempt of this “perpetual stranger” to reconnect, to make bonds to the world, to latch on instead of letting go. Merizalde, more than anything, is a witness, one who refuses to turn away from even the harshest circumstance. His engaging collection is more than just devastating and beautiful; it’s courageous.
—Stephen Cramer, author of Tongue & Groove and Shiva’s Drum.