"A new and authentic voice of the urban Latino experience." --Esmeralda Santiago, author of When I Was Puerto Rican
In a stunning narrative combining the gritty rhythms of Junot Diaz with the noir genius of Walter Mosley, Bodega Dreams announces the arrival of a writer who The Village Voice has already hailed as "a Writer on the Verge."
The word is out in Spanish Harlem: Willy Bodega is king. Need college tuition for your daughter? Start-up funds for your fruit stand? Bodega can help. He gives everyone a leg up, in exchange only for loyalty--and a steady income from the drugs he pushes.
Lyric, inspired, and darkly funny, this powerful debut novel brilliantly evokes the trial of Chino, a smart, promising young man to whom Bodega turns for a favor. Chino is drawn to Bodega's street-smart idealism, but soon finds himself over his head, navigating an underworld of switchblade tempers, turncoat morality, and murder.
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"Like I was telling you, Chino, when Nazario acquired the first buildin', the cops
would drive by and see Puerto Ricans workin' on tryin' to renovate a building. The
cops would laugh, lliey said we had no ingenuity because we were Puerto ...
You think the cops don't already know what you're doing?" "They might be sniffin',
they ain't that stupid. They got a little piece of it too. But everything is still layin' low
. No noise, and as long as there's no noise, cops don't care. But if the media ...
Never let cops inside your house unless they got a warrant, that's my philosophy.
"Of course!" Blanca said, because she didn't know any better. To her, authority
figures were always good. But I knew that it didn't matter that these two cops were
What people are saying - Write a review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - BtB_Library - LibraryThing
Bodega Dreams features really well-written, sympathetic characters living in Spanish Harlem. With a gripping, detailed portrayal of the neighborhood and a fast moving plot that's very easy to get ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - marciathing - LibraryThing
The books by Ernesto Quinonez were my first introduction to Spanish Harlem. Thanks to my Midwestern existence, and even to some years in S. Texas, I had never known this place existed. Both his novels are fantastic and engrossing. I'm looking forward to more. Read full review
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