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Publisher's Summary

Looking for an escape from childhood abuse, Reymundo Sanchez turned away from school and baseball to drugs, alcohol, and then sex and was left to fend for himself before age 14. The Latin Kings, one of the largest and most notorious street gangs in America, became his refuge and his world, but its violence cost him friends, freedom, self-respect, and nearly his life. This is a raw and powerful odyssey through the ranks of the new Mafia, where the only people more dangerous than rival gangs are members of your own gang, who in one breath will say they'll die for you and in the next will order your assassination.

Contains mature themes.

©2000 Reymundo Sanchez (P)2017 Tantor

Critic Reviews

“A slow-motion riot of drugs, sex, and gunplay." ( Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

I keep mulling it over and what it means

Couldn't stop listening to it once I started and now can't get it out of my mind. Lots of violence, sex and drugs - and teenagers dying.

I guess this is what it's like in Chicago if you're a kid who doesn't really belong anywhere and there's a park in walking distance. Wow, there's a whole life waiting for you at the park if you're young and can be fearless in the right situations.

I'm glad the author gave an account of his life over a period of years so I could see that once one is essentially used up by the gang, they don't need you anymore. Replacements are on the way; you're fully expendable.

It's real life but at a much, much faster pace. Maybe that's why it won't leave my mind yet, because I'm still trying to integrate what I learned with what I already thought I knew. And I'm doing what probably any listener would do, which is to try to conjure up a way for society or government or somebody to provide some better options than what the gangs provide.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Great

Very good book, read a while ago but listening to it is like a movie in your head. They need to narrate the the sequel, Once a King Always a King

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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great story

I truly got into this book. i wish thr narrator had been someone more familiar with, at the minimum the actual names of shine of these streets. i am from this neighborhood and it killed me to hear, over and over ,the mispronounced streets and names of some of the characters. the narration could have made this book audible version more enjoyable. phenomenal story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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amazing

I binged the entire 12 hour book that's how good it was I had a visual of what was being read and even found myself with chills every now and again amazing book and narrator

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Great book but...

narration was not the best. Spanish parts were horrible and could not really be understood, a little practice would have gone a long way. also some of the voices 'mocked' or quoted felt very fake and could have been better performed.

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very cool book

Informative book that lets you see another persons life changes and goals in order to become one with his self.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Disturbing, profound. Gets to the heart to our societies greatest problem.

It took great personal courage for Raymoundo Sanchez to write this book. Me. Sanchez pulls no punches, makes no apologies, offers no excuses for his life as a Latin King. The book is full of violence, murder, sex, drugs and betrayal. Such was his life and the lives of thousands of others. It leads the reader to understand the cause of the racial, drug induced culture of violence that the youth of Chicago and other large cities find themselves living in today.

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I couldn’t stop

Immediately trapped in story. Awesome read from start to finish. If you’re unsure what to read/listen to next choose this book you will enjoy and appreciate this book

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Society needs to understand...

This book was great. Gives a good and accurate insight into the day in day out happenings of gangs in Chicago. I am born and raised here and my mother was part of a rival gang to the Latin Kings so I was able to check up on some stories (which is just scary and made it more real).

It's so much bigger than anyone knows. I hope that readers take this and realize that it really does take a village to raise a person. One good deed could change the path of someone's life. Instead of judging and turning a blind eye, we should be a little nicer and try to prevent kids from thinking this is their only sense of family and acceptance.

I also love the way he doesn't hold back from telling the awful things he's done to people including rape, domestic violence, drugs, etc, but yet still the reader can't help but to feel sympathetic in a weird way.

The only thing about this book that drove me crazy was that the narrator pronounced Armitage wrong.... but overall was decent to listen to.

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Love It

Loved this book! Real eye opener! Hope the person this book is written about succeeds in life!