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The Angel Esmeralda: Nine Stories by Don DeLillo
The Angel Esmeralda is Don DeLillo's first book of short stories, with the nine stories written between 1979 and 2011. The title story concerns two nuns who try to help the impoverished and downtrodden in the South Bronx, and who are caught up in the miracle of a murdered girl whose face appears on a billboard. Other stories include astronauts after World War III receiving radio transmissions from fifty years earlier, a couple reaching the end of a Caribbean cruise who can't find a way off the island, an American woman living in Athens whose world comes undone by an earthquake, and a woman who witnesses a kidnapping and can't accept the truth about what she has seen. The Angel Esmeralda has received positive reviews with the Associated Press saying, "Throughout the book, DeLillo's prose has the hard, bracing edge of an etched diamond in cold bright morning light, but while the artifices of the characters he creates are often brilliant, they can also seem equally impenetrable."