OK, I’ll be honest: it was totally the title of this book that grabbed me.

And yes, it is referencing The Gangster of Love by Johnny “Guitar” Watson. Which totally fits with the theme of this book.



But they’re kind of awesome. So it’s OK.

This book follows the life of a Filipino girl, Rocky, who moves with her mother and brother to the US following the divorce of her parents. The same year they move to the US is the same year that Jimi Hendrix died (1970), which devastates Rocky and her brother.

The plot follows Rocky as she grows up as an immigrant to the US, trying to figure out “how to be,” so to speak, as a daughter, sister, lover, musician, woman, and brand-new American.

I learned quite a bit from this book. For instance, the people from the Philippines are Filipino, not Philippino. And while the Philippines are on super good terms with the US, they are NOT a territory or anything like that of the United States, which I was unclear about when starting this book.

This is a good book. Definitely one of those that you need to re-read to catch all the little references that the author throws in there 🙂

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What have you guys read from the Philippines?