This book, written in the second person, presents beautifully the life of a male who prefers sexual intimacy with those of his own sex (with some emphasis on his love and heartbreaks). It also is, somewhat, a primer on HIV & AIDS, although it's not really the main focus of the book. (The HIV & AIDS part may be looked at as a sort of consequential school of thought, a "shout out", if you will.)
I can almost say as well that the book is a mixture of romance and tragedy, although it has a very hopeful ending. The parts on forgiveness and reality were also played quite well.
This is a story about the life of Dave De Jesus. We see Dave (who had known early on in life that he had a "different" sexual orientation than the "norm") when he is still young, to when he progresses into an adult who has borne the brunt of heartache and love.
Not only does this book discuss the little details of being in love and in pain are, but it also gives especial care to inform the reader on sexually-transmitted diseases. Gangcuangco uses the setting of Orosa-Nakpil, a street once known for being the center of gay clubs and what not, in order to show how recklessness may lead to very serious consequences, particularly to one's health. (For my part, I was quite interested on the little snippets of info on HIV & AIDS that were presented here. While sometimes sounding as if it'd be something you'd read on a brochure, the info was presented little by little, so the reader wouldn't get too "bored" about it.)
Oh, and just for the record: not knowing the identity of the "narrator" up until the end was something so... mind-boggling and almost annoying for me. 'Twas quite a great show, the presentation of the identity of this mysterious person at the end of the book.
Also, I wish I had gotten the Tagalog version one. I feel that that would've had a more personal feel while reading... Not that I hadn't felt that while reading this English version. Maybe someday :D
Orosa-Nakpil, Malate: The English Transliteration by Louie Mar A. Gangcuangco
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
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