Set against a vibrant South Bronx neighborhood and the queer youth culture of Manhattan’s piers, Chulito is a coming-of-age, coming out love story of a sexy, tough, hip hop-loving, young Latino man and the colorful characters who populate his block. Chulito, which means “cutie,” is one of the boys, and everyone in his neighborhood has seen him grow up–the owner of the local bodega, the Lees from the Chinese restaurant, his buddies from the corner, and all of his neighbors and friends, including Carlos, who was Chulito’s best friend until they hit puberty and people started calling Carlos a pato…a faggot.
Chulito rejects Carlos, buries his feelings for him, and becomes best friends with Kamikaze, a local drug dealer. When Carlos comes home from his first year away from college and they share a secret kiss, Chulito’s worlds collide as his ideas of being a young man, being macho, and being in love are challenged. Vivid, sexy, funny, heartbreaking, and fearless, this knock out novel is destined to become a gay classic.
Praise for Chulito
“Hilarious, unique, heartfelt and sharp. A wonderful read.”—Sandra Cisneros, author of the acclaimed The House on Mango Street and Caramelo
“Chulito introduces a fresh, engaging, and stirring voice. Rice-Gonzalez’s memorable characters live on the page with a force and verve and vulnerability that touches our heart. This is a beautiful debut.”—Jaime Manrique, author of Latin Moon in Manhattan and Eminent Maricones
5 ½ x 8 ¼, 275 pp