Reviewed by Alexander Chee, NPR Books, Feb. 1, 2012
The first story in Lysley Tenorio’s debut collection begins in the seats at the Primero theater in Manila, where “they use a bedsheet for a screen.” The last opens in Lemoore, Calif., a suburban town named phonetically for love. Taken together, this is the unique territory in which Tenorio sets his stories, where Filipino traditions meet Californian modernity again and again, each encounter revealing something unexpected about both cultures.
… Tenorio, born in the Philippines and raised in California, has taken a uniquely Filipino-American perspective, polyglot and glittering with cinema dreams, and used it to make a bold collection of stories of the rejected, the helpless and the lost. “Montress” is the debut of a singular talent.