Firefly (Cocuyo) is a dream-like evocation of pre-war Cuba, replete with hurricanes, mystical cults and slave-markets. The story is the coming-of-age of a precocious and exuberant boy with an oversized head and underdeveloped sense of direction, who views the world as a threatening conspiracy. Told in breathless and lyrical prose, the novel is a loving rendition of a long-lost home, a meditation on exile, and an allegory of Cuba’s isolation in the world.
...it is the language—the singing, ringing language—that makes Firefly a master work.
— New York Journal of Books
One can only hope that Firefly‘s English publication will spark renewed interest in the singular brilliance of this indelible master of Spanish language fiction.
— Three Percent
Dazzling and ultimately quite haunting. . . Fried has maintained the dark beauty and mystery of the work . . . Rich poetry, elusive plotting, and layered images make for an interesting read.
— Kirkus Reviews
A gorgeous and decadent seam of literature is revealed in the pages of Firefly.
— The Driftless Area Review
Severo Sarduy has everything . . . so brilliant, so funny, and so bewilderingly apt in his borrowings, his derivations, as well as in his inventions, his findings, he leaves one breathless, like a shot of rum.
— Richard Howard
Sarduy is the master of wordscapes that dip, shake, and explode.
— The New York Times Book Review
Sarduy rendered the epiphany of the body luminous, where the pleasure of the void meets the furious fire of the world.