A Cuban author known for his visceral, realistic style, he is most famous for Trilogia sucia de La Habana (The Dirty Havana Trilogy), Dog Meat, and The Snake's Nest.
He worked as an ice cream seller, farm worker, swimming instructor, and construction worker before making his name as a novelist, poet, journalist, and artist.
His works, filled with irony, expose the dark side of life in Cuba, but also reveal a great love for his native country.
He was raised in Pinar del Rio, Cuba.
He is a contemporary of Cuban-American author Cristina Garcia.