A picaresque, smart, and smartass memoir of Harvard lawyer
Eddie Loperena’s Newyorican life in “the country I was offered.”
Brought to New York from Puerto Rico when he was seven, Eddie Loperena grew up dreaming of returning to his island paradise.
As he approaches forty, the loss of his wife and his business partner have landed Eddie squarely at a crossroads, so he closes his legal practice, intending to write, when he gets a call from his estranged boyhood friend Carlos, his “big brother” in the neighborhood, now a well-known drug dealer
Carlos extracts a favor from Eddie: to hold two suitcases full of “valuable papers.” After Eddie picks up the suitcases, Carlos disappears. During a run for political office, Eddie’s secret connection to Carlos is exposed and he is accused of absconding with Carlos’ drug money.
Eddie survives cops and a vindictive D.A. as well as rumors that he has disappeared with Carlos’ drug money, but he cannot allow the New York newspapers to reduce his complex decision to help Carlos to a pseudo-social science portrayal of a two-dimensional, American minority puppet show. In self-exile, Eddie writes a tragicomic satire of the seventies, of the island of his birth that cast him adrift, and of his minority membership in “the country I was offered.” Writing from a place he calls Nowhere, Eddie Loperena implores: Don’t Let Me Die In Disneyland!