In a surprising narrative combining the gritty rhythms of Junot Diaz with the noir genius of Walter Mosley, Bodega Desires pulls us into Spanish Harlem, the place the phrase is out: Willie Bodega is king. Want school tuition in your daughter? Begin-up funds in your fruit stand? Bodega might help. He provides everybody a leg up, in alternate just for loyalty—and a gentle revenue from the medicine he pushes.
Lyrical, impressed, and darkly humorous, this highly effective debut novel brilliantly evokes the trial of Chino, a wise, promising younger man to whom Bodega turns for a favor. Chino is drawn to Bodega’s street-smart idealism, however quickly finds himself over his head, navigating an underworld of switchblade tempers, turncoat morality, and homicide.