A Mexican journalist, novelist, screenwriter, and television producer, Ramirez (La casa de los ajolotes [The House of the Axolotes], Oceano, 2000) is known for his criticisms of life in Mexico City and for recapturing the customs and living conditions of the working class. In this humorous novel Ramirez also conveys an irreverent vision life in Mexico City. Maciosare, an underprivileged sociology graduate, is trying to survive in the chaos of a city where social reforms and new economic benefits are not helping the lower classes. Inspired by his striving and idealistic family and by his girlfriend's voluptuous body, Maciosare becomes a designer and vendor of oversized women's undergarments. From his store, he tells readers about the son he had with his girlfriend and about the time she eloped to Los Angeles with another man. Using popular songs and phrases, soap opera dialog, and newspaper chronicles, Ramirez creates a multilayered narrative that focuses on the daily life of Mexico City's working class. Yet, while his characters are so witty and funny, Ramirez still subtly portrays the struggles and tragedies of Mexicans today. Recommended for public and academic libraries as well as bookstores carrying Mexican contemporary fiction. Also recommended for young adult collections. Lourdes V zquez, Rutgers Univ. Libs., New Brunswick, NJ Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.