The award-winning memoir of life in an LA street gang from the acclaimed Chicano author and former Los Angeles Poet Laureate: “Fierce, and fearless” (The New York Times).
Luis J. Rodríguez joined his first gang at age eleven. As a teenager, he witnessed the rise of some of the most notorious cliques in Southern California. He grew up knowing only a life of violence—one that revolved around drugs, gang wars, and police brutality. But unlike most of those around him, Rodríguez found a way out when art, writing, and political activism gave him a new path—and an escape from self-destruction.
Always Running spares no detail in its vivid, brutally honest portrayal of street life and violence, and it stands as a powerful and unforgettable testimonial of gang life by one of the most acclaimed Chicano writers of his generation.
This ebook features an illustrated biography of Luis J. Rodríguez including rare images from the author’s personal collection.
As the preface of this admirable but ultimately disappointing memoir states, Rodriguez, an award-winning poet and publisher of the small press Tia Chucha, decided to document his youth as an East Los Angeles gang member in an effort to steer his teenaged son, Ramiro, away from the gang that he recently joined. A member of various Latino gangs based in and around the South San Gabriel Valley during the late 1960s, Rogriguez participated in random acts of violence, and was imprisoned on several occasions for the crimes he committed. Unfortunately, he offers frustratingly little detail behind the facts of his life and activity in the gangs. Rodriquez presents colorful characters and highly charged events, such as shootings, Mexican funerals, rapes and arrests, but his writing style renders much of that rich material forgettable.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Bringing back memories...
I was born and raised in Los Angeles, in the South Central area; so I can picture the streets and feel the vibe as I read this book. It's such a great read; I recommended this book to my siblings, friends, and friends from other countries, so that they can picture the true life in varrio of Los Angeles and not the "Hollywood" life that the media has painted on this city.
I didn't want to buy this book on my iPhone's iBook app, I actually wanted the book itself, but I couldn't hold back on wanting to read it, again.
I had to read this book for a school report. But in all honesty this book was acceptable. I actually enjoyed the book. At first I thought it was just a school book but by the 2nd chapter I was hooked and it actually made me think about how the streets are no joke
Read this when I was about 15 multiple times! Love this book! Really helped me see the darkness in the gang life and pushed me to be the opposite. Because of this book I chose my career and with an open mind and heart I work to help youth such as those described in this book make better choices. Thank you Mr. Rodriguez for sharing your struggles with us!