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Lady Q: The Rise and Fall of a Latin Queen

4.19  ·  Rating Details ·  1,179 Ratings  ·  146 Reviews
This is a raw and powerful memoir not only of one woman’s struggle to survive the streets but also of her ascent to the top ranks of the new mafia, where the only people more dangerous than rival gangswere members of her own. At age five Sonia Rodriguez’s stepfather began to abuse her; at 10 she was molested by her uncle and beaten by her mother when she told on him; and b ...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published July 1st 2008 by Chicago Review Press (first published January 1st 2008)
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When I Was Puerto Rican by Esmeralda SantiagoLady Q by Reymundo SánchezAlmost a Woman by Esmeralda SantiagoMy Bloody Life by Reymundo SánchezOnce a King, Always a King by Reymundo Sánchez
2nd out of 55 books — 62 voters
Heavy Duty People by Iain ParkeHeavy Duty Attitude by Iain ParkeHeavy Duty Trouble by Iain ParkeExile on Bridge Street by Eamon LoingsighMy Bloody Life by Reymundo Sánchez
Books on Gang Life
7th out of 24 books — 30 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jan 16, 2009 Anna rated it liked it
Recommends it for: mature young adults, people who work with teens
This is a sad book. It really isn't the story of a high ranking female gang member so much as it is a story of an abused and confused girl-turned-women who can't seem to escape the cycle of poverty and abuse. It's a story about what happens when you grow up in a dysfunctional family and don't learn from your mistakes. Sonia, who grew up in a very abusive household, basically went on to make one mistake after another and cannot seem to make "good" decisions even through the very end of this story ...more
Angelica ❤ Guerita Linda
Feb 18, 2010 Angelica ❤ Guerita Linda rated it it was amazing
this book was really interesting. im not going to lie the first time i started reading it, it got me so curious on keep reading more and more. Its About sonia trying to fit in her family never liked her they always blame her for whatever her sisters do. Her mom never finish school, remarry a couple of times, only had babies never work, alwayz depending on her man. All started when she move in to chicago to live with carlos her mother's new husband. At first he seems nice to the girls treated the ...more
Dec 27, 2008 Patrick rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2008
The girl this is about says something in the afterward about how she hopes that it could help just one person, etc., but you can't help anyone if they're too bored to finish your story. There is not a whole lot devoted to her actual experiences as a high-ranking member of the Chicago street gang, this is more of a portrait of an abused, impoverished single mother in the city, and not a very good one at that. Reymundo Sanchez who interviewed Lady Q for the book, previously wrote his own autobiogr ...more
Jan 07, 2009 Jennifer rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Javy Perez
Aug 15, 2013 Javy Perez rated it it was amazing
All 3 books that I have read by Reymundo Sanchez, have been stellar. From the first page to the last, I could not put the books down. I’m an advocate reader and these books are on my top ten list. Maybe is due to how I can relate. When I was younger I was involved in gang activity. Majority of what Mr. Sanchez writes about is reality, which occurred during his generation, my generation, and with the current generation. As sad as this may be and/or sound is the truth and reality. As a Latino and ...more
Mar 15, 2008 Julian rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoir
This book was written to tell the story of a female gang member's life, not pull off amazing literary feats. The writing is simplistic, but the story is powerful.

A common sentence in the book was something like, "Lady Q had finally had enough of the dangers of gang life/selling drugs/living with abusive family member, and was ready to make some positive changes. She got a job and found a new apartment with [family member that used to abuse her but she has made up with]." It never lasts, and ove
Leslie Bermeo
Sep 13, 2014 Leslie Bermeo rated it really liked it
The book Lady Q by Reymundo Sanchez has permitted me to see the life of a gang banger in a whole new perspective. Lady Q , her real name is Sonia ,was a smart student that had brains, dreams , and had love inside of her like any other student. Yet there was something that lacked in her life and that's what started her life filled with gangs and drugs and sex. That something was "love" from others . Her mother preferred to let her get beaten or beat her herself than having to fight her boyfriends ...more
Mar 10, 2011 Lourdes rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Its About sonia trying to fit in her family never liked her they always blame her for whatever her sisters do. Her mom never finish school, remarried a couple of times and she didn't really have anywhere to live, she jus depended on friends and her husbands. When Sonia's mom moves from puerto rico to Chicago with her kids and her husband carlos, carlos is all nice to them and treats them like his all but them problems started, he was a drug dealer he also startes hitting sonia and blamed her for ...more
Apr 06, 2016 Fanny rated it really liked it
Took a star off simply because of Reymundo's attitude towards Sonia. He was extremely judgmental as if he has forgotten what it was like to have to struggle. It was jarring at some points in the book because I could so clearly see it was Reymundo's voice and not her. Otherwise it was an interesting look into her life.
Sep 17, 2008 Marla is currently reading it
teaches u alot!! u shuls read it!!
Jan 17, 2011 Uvas rated it it was amazing
i chose this book because i read the first two and i liked them. so i wanted to read this one because it has the female side to it and i also like the cover. my book is non fiction beacuse it actually happend in chicago. the main character is a girl who dont take no for an answer. she gets abused by her family so she grows up to b a gang banger. she falls in love with with the king of all kings and she becomes the queen of the kings and she gets what ever she wants. money power drugs what ever s ...more
Jan 15, 2013 Jose rated it it was amazing
This book is amazing it show you a lot of positive things and negative things about gangs. How they work and the consequences you get after you do something that can damage the gang. My favorite part of this book was when the author tells the consequences for breaking an important rule. Lady Q was a gang member of the Latin kings she was a loyalty gang member and willing to do everything for the gang, but she break an important rule for the Latin Kings to not been seen in camera, she and her fri ...more
Jan 15, 2013 Miguel rated it really liked it
Well i think that Lady Q is a great book. Its a book about how life was to Sonia in her world she lived. Sonia was the middle girl between her two sisters. One was older then her and the other one was younger then her Since her childhood in Puerto Rico her life was tuff. Her Mother never believed her and never trusted her. When her mother decided to move to Chicago from Perto Rico Sonia thought her nightmare had ended but in reality it has just begun. Once they got to Chicago her older sister be ...more
May 31, 2016 Owen rated it it was amazing
I think when some one makes a stupid disunion in real life is just a musket. But when some one did that stupid thing because she wanted to or need to, that have a lasting effect on me. this book starts of with a kid who was brought in to a world of hurt then became the bad gal of the year, then fall back to the human life to become a mother. This book is like two story's being told by one person. we begin with Sonia Rodriguez a Bright Child who broke in to being Lady Q the women who went form th ...more
Feb 08, 2014 Tristy rated it it was ok
This is a tough book to get through, not just because it is a heartbreaking story about a life of abuse, abandonment and violence, but because it falls into the well-intentioned trap of trying to let the "true voice" of the subject come through, while sacrificing actual flow and good story-telling. I really appreciate Reymundo Sanchez's passion about getting Sonia's story out into the world, but it reads like a long legal dissertation that you might hear at a trial. There is no flow to the story ...more
Mar 14, 2011 Alejandro rated it it was amazing
This book is about a girl named sonia she had a horrible childhood, when she was a little kid she got abuse by her uncles and cousens, she tells her mom about wat happens but her mom dosen't belive her so she beats her. as she grows older a gang called The Latin Kings hang in her house, one day she decides to join the gang and gets baeat up for 3 mins from shoulder to toes. she is called Lady Q she gets alot of respect among the gang so one day she goes live on tv to see opra so she decides to t ...more
Mar 14, 2016 Jisela rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 25, 2016 Cristina rated it it was ok

An interesting story that is covered by juvenile writing

There is little that isn 19t compelling about this story. A young girl in an abusive home and environment falls into the arms of the gangs around her for a source of protection and love. She rises through the ranks from being a street soldier to leading one of the largest distributors of cocaine in Chicago. It 19s a morally reverse rags to riches back to rags story. The facts in the novel are raw and hard hitting but nevertheless poorly tol
Susan Velazquez
Feb 28, 2016 Susan Velazquez rated it it was ok
Shelves: gang-memoirs
This was assigned reading in an English class focusing on "gang memoirs". Lady Q is certainly unique in this genre since female gang members are rarely discussed.

I was excited to read Sonia/Lady Q's story, but I was quickly disappointed.

It's important to note that this book is ghostwritten by Reymundo Sanchez, cobbled from interviews with Sonia. Because of this, the reader never gets to hear Sonia's "voice" throughout her story. Sanchez wrote in straightforward, "just the facts, ma'am" style as
The book lady q is a novel by reymundo sanchez that takes place in new york the story is about a girl named sonia who is living in a abusive home she lives with her sisters mother and stepfather.In the book sonia is repeadlly sexually and phyisaclly abused by her family which leads her to hang out with her older sister who introduces her to her friends who are all in the gang the latin kings she later gose on to jointhe gang too but then rivals of the gang go to her school so she ends up leaving ...more
Aug 27, 2015 Tim rated it it was amazing
If you peer into the heart of a Bad Girl, you'll often find a Sad Story. So it is with "Sonia Rodriguez," the pseudonym of the woman who became Lady Q: the Queen of the Chicago Latin Kings in the 1980s. Reymundo Sanchez (author of "My Bloody Life," a memoir of his own life in the Kings) has transcribed Sonia's story with sensitivity and a gritty, unflinching eye.

It would be very difficult to make Lady Q's life into a movie, because it doesn't fit the hopeful Hollywood formula. I read this book
Jazmin Rodriguez
Oct 06, 2014 Jazmin Rodriguez rated it it was amazing
By Reymundo Sanchez, Lady Q Rise of the Fallen Of Latin Qween,Taught My opininon of this book Lady Q Rise of The Fallen of Latin Queen is very interesting to read and learn I enjoyed learning new words and have the imagination of whats happening in the book its has a clues and ideas of what the Author wants the reader to know gives the reader attention.

The theme of this story is to learn your way out of trouble showing how cruel life can be when u choose the wrong path. The Author also illustrat
Miriam Mendoza
Jan 09, 2015 Miriam Mendoza rated it it was amazing
Lady Q, Reymundo Sanchez and Sonia Rodriguez. Chicago:Chicago review press, 2008. 269 pages.
The book of Lady Q, Sonia Rodriguez was a normal girl who lived in Humboldt park with her family. even tho her family didn't treat her good and her step dad beat her, she still did good in school and wasn't a girl that got in trouble. Until one day she met the kings and queens from humboldt park, whe. she started hangout out with them she felt she was at home, she felt important while being with them. S
Jan 07, 2013 Reineysha rated it it was amazing
This book was really good I dont really like reading but as soon as I started this book I had to keep going I really got into it because of the beginning it was really sad I would totally read this book again but I hope their will be a second book because I really want to know about what happens between sonia and Tino does he ever get out of jail??? Will they get married and live a better life?? I would like to see another book to see if that happens.
Victor Zajac
Jan 13, 2013 Victor Zajac rated it liked it
This is about a girl who started out as a very good student, had a poor upbringing and turned to gangs. She became the Leader of the Latin Queens in Chicago, and this is her story. It's actually quite sad and realistic. It's not all killing and gang banging. I did pick up tidbits that I think will make me a better parent.
Rodolfo Roman
Jan 27, 2016 Rodolfo Roman is currently reading it
In my opinion this book is a good example for people who have shut the doors for them selfs due to hope loss, there is always hope and in this book its shows how a person become the most ignorant savage to a educated experience women who can take over the world. this book is great!
Sep 17, 2008 Lorenza rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Lorenza by: My SiSTER AND COUSiN
all this books that ive have read are
relly cool couse they teach you a lesson
of what they whent threw an also what they
regret:]..they also tell you to think about
something before you do sumthing STUPiD
Mar 14, 2014 Anthony rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ashley Casillas
Nov 04, 2010 Ashley Casillas rated it it was amazing
this book is really intresting because it talks about a girl who had a really harsh life . and felt that her family was with the latin kings o queens
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