Ramon’s Story

The GLBTRT has been reviewing books and movies in its newsletter since the early 1990s. Trace the evolution of queer publishing through these historic reviews. This review was originally published in  Vol. 5. No. 1, Spring 1993. 

Cover of Ramon's StoryRamon’s Story. By Rick Elston. Los Hombres Press, 1991. $9.95. Paper (ISBN 1979603071)

The Ramon of Ramon’s Story is currently a successful businessman in the southwestern United States, a feat one might consider almost heroic, given the story presented here. Ramon’s Story is the transcription and condensation of a series of interviews conducted in the mid-1980’s by cultural anthropologist Rick Elston (pseud).

As Elston points out in his introduction, Ramon’s story is not unique, and, consequently, is not always very interesting. A product of extreme poverty and parental neglect in his native Mexico (he feigns illness and wears his sister’s clothes for attention), he turns to alcohol, drugs and prostitution for survival. The poignancy of his early life, however, soon becomes a somewhat tedious and inarticulate litany of the horrors he experiences. Finding salvation in a 12- step program once (illegally) inside the United States, the story ends with the faintest possibility of hope for our speaker.

This slight book might be useful in collections catering to the recovery movement or in very comprehensive gay studies collections. Otherwise not recommended.

Reviewed by Peter Fekety
South Brunswick Public LIbrary
Monmouth Junction, NJ

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