Crazy Loco Love: A Memoir by Victor Villasenor, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Crazy Loco Love: A Memoir
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Crazy Loco Love: A Memoir

2.7 9
by Victor Villasenor
     
 

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Growing up on his parents’ ranch in North San Diego County, Victor Villaseñor’s teenage years were marked by a painful quest to find a place for himself in a world he did not fit into. Discriminated due to his Mexican heritage, Victor questions the tenets of his faith and the restrictions it places on his own spirituality and sexuality. Ultimately,

Overview

Growing up on his parents’ ranch in North San Diego County, Victor Villaseñor’s teenage years were marked by a painful quest to find a place for himself in a world he did not fit into. Discriminated due to his Mexican heritage, Victor questions the tenets of his faith and the restrictions it places on his own spirituality and sexuality. Ultimately, his search for identity takes him to Mexico to learn of his family’s roots, where he soon discovers that his heritage doesn’t determine his intelligence or success. Through this often humorous and poignant tale, Victor deftly undermines the macho stereotype so often associated with Latinos, while exposing the tender vulnerability and naïveté of a young man grappling with the roles foisted on him by the church and society. Victor’s youthful misadventures elicit sympathy, laughter, and tears as he attempts to divine the mysteries of the opposite sex in this powerful, revealing memoir. “The clarity that comes from Villaseñor’s personal and cultural experience is not matched in any of Steinbeck’s major works” (Los Angeles Times).

Editorial Reviews

Adam Langer
One of the strengths of Victor Villasenor's memoir Crazy Loco Love is that, even as he approaches the age of 70, the author can vividly conjure up the exuberance and vitality of being a teen in 1950s and '60s Southern California. Reading his book feels like being transported into the private, passionately scrawled notebooks of the author's untutored early self.
—The Washington Post
San Antonio Express-News
Crazy Loco Love solidifies Villaseñor's status as an enchanting Mexican American storyteller. What makes this memoir so intriguing is that he isn't afraid to bear his soul and serve up every aspect of his life under the powerful, grueling lens of self-examination. Though readers may feel they know Villaseñor through his earlier works, this book gives us young Victor-defiant, rebellious and sexually charged-and the results are simply fascinating.
Kirkus Reviews
An enthusiastic, undisciplined mess of an autobiography by Mexican American writer Villase-or (Burro Genius, 2004, etc.). Slightly less New Age-tinged and Mescalito-ish than its predecessor volumes, which have collectively been likened to a Chicano version of Roots, this installment highlights some of Villase-or's by now well-practiced narrative tics. One is the seemingly random use of Spanish mashed up in maddeningly repetitive English, as in, "He smiled the biggest smile I'd ever seen him smile and took me into his arms, hugging me in a big abrazo"-hugging him with a hug while smiling a smile, in other words. Another is Villase-or's near-trademark use of uppercase words in the middle of otherwise harmless sentences: "Why? Because CONTROL WAS EVERYTHING for him!" Such things notwithstanding, the prurient-minded reader will find Crazy Loco Love a departure in a new direction, for now the author, revisiting his late-adolescent self, becomes exceedingly interested in matters of the flesh: A ripe breast bursts out of a camisa, and it is cause for wonder, for "I'd never seen a girl's naked breast before, and especially not one this large and up close to my face." Said vision yields a physical reaction whereby the author's Levis suddenly seem a touch too tight, and he experiences dizziness and shortness of breath; some 120 pages later he is wetting the bed, but not with urine; later he has finally entered the holy of holies, save with a twist that will raise a shock of recognition in fans of Chinatown. All this makes Villase-or "crazyloco," meaning, presumably, crazy in two cultures (though he swears off cultures at book's end to declare himself simply a Human Being on the way to"BEING with all capitals"), or maybe, given his repetitive habits, simply crazy crazy. Fans won't mind, though everyone else will wish this book had had a firmer editor.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781582702728
Publisher:
Atria Books/Beyond Words
Publication date:
11/09/2010
Edition description:
Original
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
461,652
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

Victor Villaseñor is an acclaimed, Mexican-American writer best known for the New York Times bestselling novel Rain of Gold. He has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize, and Crazy Loco Love was chosen as the Best Biography in English at the 2009 International Latino Book Awards.

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