As a child, Eddie Santiago grows up on the mean streets of his Puerto Rican neighborhood in Chicago, where he witnesses his father's murder. Now in his thirties, after serving ten years in a state penitentiary, Eddie is coming home. With prison behind him, Eddie plans to seek refuge in Miami Beach. But new trouble begins when Eddie and his old friend/gangster Little Tony are pulled over by two cops, who rob Eddie of his money belt, which contains his life savings. Convinced it was a set-up, Eddie is determined to recover what is rightfully his, all the while trying to reform his childhood friend.
Along the way, Eddie falls for a Mexican beauty with a past she is trying to escape. But his romance is almost cut short when he is dragged into a drug war, becomes a murder suspect, and is forced to participate in an ill-conceived casino heist. (taken from the Hachette Book Group website)
Daniel Serrano was born and raised by his mother in the tough streets of New York and Chicago. The eldest of three boys, Serrano witnessed gangs, crime, drugs, poverty, and even murder, as his family lived the urban Latino struggle. After drifting through menial jobs for years, he enrolled in the Weekend Program at Shimer College and studied the classics.
Serrano went on to earn a law degree from St. John's University. As an attorney, he has spent the bulk of his career advising politicians and alleged criminals. He is currently at work on his next book. Daniel currently divides his time between New York City and Puerto Rico, where he is hard at work on his next novel. (taken from the Hachette Book Group website)
Gunmetal Black is definitely not a book I would normally read- it contains some graphic violence and vivid descriptions of street life. I did, however, find the story intriguing. It depicts a part of our world that is so very sad but very real.
I thought Serrano did an excellent job describing his characters and how they were thinking and feeling during the story. Personally I found the mix of English, Spanish and slang a bit confusing since I don't speak any Spanish at all but I managed to grasp the story anyway. I really appreciated how Serrano shows just how much a parent can influence their child- for better or worse.
There is foul language and sexual content but I concede that the story would be rather unrealistic without those aspects of that lifestyle.
I also appreciated the reading group guide included in the back of the book which contained some very insightful questions.
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