Straight Outta Compton

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( 31 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780932511607: Straight Outta Compton

Follows the lives of two friends, Rooster and Clive-nem, as they try to cope with drugs, gangs, and women, while growing up in an L.A. ghetto.

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From the Back Cover:

Straight Outta Compton is about living large, living in the fast lane. It raps to its readers about being black, being born and raised in the L.A. ghetto, being so-called "Niggaz 4-Life", being sweet on black life (for those in it, the beat goes on). It focuses on the lives of two black men, Rooster and Clive-nem, who grow up together in Compton. Clive starts out like a big brother to Rooster, but Rooster changes. After Clive's daddy dies of a drug overdose, the story shifts. Rooster, the main character living large, becomes obsessed with women. Meanwhile, Clive wants to break from Compton. He and Rooster split up, fall into rival gangs - the Bloods and the Crips - and begin to hate each other. Clive has other problems besides Rooster - namely, Compton. He thinks that he's made a girl pregnant. He's involved with gangs. Straight Outta Compton samples from all aspects of black life in its search to have its characters find what rapper Heavy D. would call a "Peaceful Journey". It wasn't just written; it was mixed by a DJ, and the result is hyped!

From Kirkus Reviews:

A rap, jive, and video-inflected hallucination of the L.A. black ghetto, winner of the 1992 Nilon Award for minority fiction: a violent, slangy, tour-de-force debut. Unlike Jess Mowry's Way Past Cool (p. 288), which uses more traditional narrative form to explore youthful violence in a California ghetto, Cruz throws the reader into a fast-moving stream of insults, images, physical and emotional brutality. Even readers who understand all the vocabulary will be swept into disorientation--though never boredom--by the cutting and mixing in this druggy, surreal nightmare. ``Alondra bled real black blood mixed with 10W-40 oil and hard water'' opens a chapter in which an L.A. street is personified as a woman: Rodney King, being beaten by police, ``kissed Alondra with his big lips...put his chest up against Alondra, the dark tarred pebbles feeling like hard nipples underneath his skin.'' A prostitute keeps spitting out babies during a conversation. Women are routinely feared, hated, abused, and demeaned. Boyhood friends become enemies, joining different gangs; one young man rapes and murders a friend's mother. Throughout, characters see themselves inside a blaxploitation film, make conversation derived from song lyrics and movies, and find themselves in crime stories in the newspaper, as if Cruz acknowledges that the living world portrayed here to such terrifying effect may owe as much to media-shaped images as to actual people living ghetto lives. Raging energy and cruel humor: so up-to-the-minute it's hard to judge its lasting power, but an explosive package for 1992. -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Cruz, Ricardo Cortez
Published by Fiction Collective Two (1992)
ISBN 10: 0932511600 ISBN 13: 9780932511607
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Book Description Fiction Collective Two, 1992. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110932511600

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Cruz, Ricardo Cortez
Published by Fiction Collective Two
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