"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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my mother hated Sapo. "I don't want to see you hanging around with that
demonio," she'd say to me. But I never listened, because Sapo meant adventure.
Sapo meant we could steal beer and drink it together. He meant flying kites on
the roof ...
The gossip and turmoil they would create by doing this in secret. "Claudia,"
Blanca said, "you know your sisters will hate you. They will accuse you of
corruption. Roberto's mother will hate you." "She hates me already. But I did
nothing wrong, ...
The same women who once harbored crushes would whisper as he passed by, "
That guy was a church boy once and now he steals from his mother." "Why didn't
you tell me before, Blanca?" I turned toward Roberto. "You know, Roberto ...
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