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Once a King, Always a King: The Unmaking of a Latin King

4.2 of 5 stars 4.20  ·  rating details  ·  1,135 ratings  ·  115 reviews
This riveting sequel to My Bloody Life traces Reymundo Sanchez’s struggle to create a “normal” life outside the Latin Kings, one of the nation's most notorious street gangs, and to move beyond his past. Sanchez illustrates how the Latin King motto “once a king, always a king” rings true and details the difficulty and danger of leaving that life behind. Filled with heart-po ...more
Paperback, 304 pages
Published October 1st 2004 by Chicago Review Press (first published 2003)
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When I Was Puerto Rican by Esmeralda SantiagoLady Q by Reymundo SanchezAlmost a Woman by Esmeralda SantiagoMy Bloody Life by Reymundo SanchezOnce a King, Always a King by Reymundo Sanchez
Boricua
5th out of 52 books — 52 voters
Heavy Duty People by Iain ParkeHeavy Duty Attitude by Iain ParkeHeavy Duty Trouble by Iain ParkeMy Bloody Life by Reymundo SanchezOnce a King, Always a King by Reymundo Sanchez
Books on Gang Life
5th out of 19 books — 20 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,073)
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Michele
I know the author was a latin king and didn't have all that much education, but didn't his editors? There were many grammatical and spelling errors that prevented me from just reading the book because I had to stop and figure out why what I read was wrong or didn't make sense.

Other than that, I felt like the author was just bragging about his sexual conquests, how many drugs he did, how he was so popular in jail and was an advisor to the head king. When he wasn't bragging, the other tone of the
...more
Jackie
Once a King, Always a King takes up where My Bloody Life leaves off...Reymundo Sanchez trying to get away from the street life, gangs, and violence of Chicago's Humboldt Park neighborhood. Sanchez gets a computer job at University of Illinois-Chicago and starts to feel good about his decisions and the path his life is taking. Occasionally, the old gang ways try to pull him back into drugs and crime, but he manages to steer clear of them for the most part. He meets Marilyn Garcia, an attractive, ...more
Haleigh Robbins
so far Rey Rey is just telling the story of how he escaped the gang life but returned and now lives with Spanky a Latin King and helps him run his drug business. Rey Rey as he is now called because he lost the title of Lil Loco the day he decided not to wear the crown he lost all respect from the Latin Kings,is now continuing to remain a deeper and deeper part of the Latin Kings. Where I'm at now Rey Rey betrayed the Kings and now lives with his ex-lover Loca and his new lover Lily who are also ...more
David Patino
Once a king, Always a King by Reymundo Sanchez is a true life story about an ex gangbanger. What attracted me to this book was that it connected to me in a sort of way. It really pinpoints the life of a gang life style. Everything that happened was crazy. It was shocking and unexpected. The drugs, sex, violence, family matters is what really depicts his life style. Plus the power of money. Which really caught my eye.
Reymundo name in the gang is Lil Loco. That's because he was a really crazy gan
...more
Jose
why did i chose this book: I chose this book beacuse one i all ready read the first book. Allso you told me that i would like this book. The genre: the genre of this book is memoir because he tells you what happend in parts of his life. The setting of the book: the book took place in three big cities of the United States. Like Chicago IL, Dallas TX, Miami FL. the Discription of the main charector: rey is trying to find himself in a way becuse now he a gown man and needs to get his act together.s ...more
Daisy
1. I liked that the main person talked about how he started his life as a gang member and how his life changed. Also, his choses effected the people around him. The book moved slowly because it was giving details and good information about him. There is nothing that i did not like about the book. I think the book was really good and interesting to read that I recommend young adults to read it.

2. My favorite character was the main character because it kind of remind me of my uncle that he went t
...more
Christian Acosta
Once A King Always A King
Plot-
Reymundo Sanchez is a former Latin Deciple, he is from the south side of Chicago. Reymundo's life is a told in this book. Reymundo had a tough time growing up so he decided to make new friends and a new family so he decided to join the largest gang in chicago which were the Latin Kings. After years past Rey became concerned about if he was making the right decision while in the gang, his best friend who died from a rival gang confrontation, after that devastated mo
...more
Joaquin
I think that the book Once King Always A King is really good so far because it's teaching me not to jion a gang even though i never would its giving me more information not to for example t charand hes been character rey was in a gang called the Latin Kings and hes been in it for a while but theres this thing called a three minute beat down only if your gonna leave the gang and since rey got tired of being a drug dealer, killing people, and abusing them he left to become a regular human in humbe ...more
Danny Kim
I found the story in thid book very interesting and compelling. This book had me reading chapter to chapter due to it's sorrow filled and inspirational story to tell. I thought this book was very inspirational on how a chicago gangbanger did his best to turn his life around. From this book I had learned that anything is possible through hard work and dedication no matter how hard your life is. I thought the book also had a good point on the ignorance that minorities go through on a daily basis b ...more
JUAN IBARRAaa
This book is actually a second part to my bloody life it still is based on reymundo sanches but it talks about his decision he made .Which was getting back to the gang life and start doing trouble.Reymundo starts living with a latin king member .but as time passes reymundo needed to do something for his nation which was kill .when reymundo got in the car with his friends to the mission they set up for him he realized he wasnt ment to be in a gang so he ran out the car and went back to his apartm ...more
Jonathan
In this book Reymundo Sanchez an ex Latin King tries to stay out of the gang violence he once was in. This book is a sequel to "My Bloody Life" and is a great book to read and has alot of details about his life and the dialogue is good. It tells us his life and all his problems he still going through,knowing that he came from an abusive family in his childhood. The change in not becoming lil loco from his past, was moving from Chicago to Dallas Texas with his girlfriend Marilyn Garcia. I learned ...more
Luis Perez
Nov 14, 2014 Luis Perez marked it as to-read
Reymundo Sánchez started from the bottom. His family brought him from Puerto Rico for a better life. that's pretty interesting to me. How he grow up by him self in the environment. All the gang, drugs and sex involved.Most of the time he would be out selling drugs or putting hits on other rival gang. Most interesting is how girls actually are down for the gang and to be the trap lady's. Like hold the guns drugs or even bring them to do hits so the police wont look at them since girls are in the ...more
Shaterion Alexander
Apr 24, 2014 Shaterion Alexander is currently reading it
"Once a king, always a king" by Raymundo Sanchez, is a thrills seeker expressing the ideas of profanity, ignorance, and conformity. While Raymundo struggled with the idea of change,he remains stable somewhat. He went through rough patches but was eventually able to push through.
“I'm pissed off because of all the fuckin' people who shut their eyes while others are victimized because it doesn't benefit them to get involved. It pissed me off that every-fuckin'-body is such a tough guy until a tou
...more
Erik Limon
Feb 11, 2014 Erik Limon rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: I would recommend this to all teenagers
Once a King, Always a King is about a guy name Reymundo Sanchez that has been a memeber of the Latin Kings Ever since he was teenager. They way he describes how things go for him are really horrible. I learn So much from this book, never thought it would be so hard to get out of a gang. The way he got beat up is something I would never want to experince. He try turning his life around but it didn't work out. He would end up been back in the gang and back to what he use to do. He had a job at the ...more
Beverly Johnson
As I finished this book, I can honestly say this book is very in depth from beginning to end. As from the beginning it was very detailed. As a child growing up the author had made a lot of wrong choices that affected his life mentally and especially with other people. Being in the gang made him feel some type of comfort because while he was being abused by his mother and stepfather and also being raped by his other male cousin he was traumatized by these events that led him being the man that he ...more
Tanasia
This book reminds me when I was watching the history channel about gangs. It kind of makes me sad when they have to get beat up if they try to leave.But I think people should not even joining gangs in the 1st place. A lot of people die and get hurt even children.
OfficialNerd
i love this book i know i say that too most of the books but this one just hit like a rock and made me think really hard about ppl who are struggling on the streets and how they can make a difference in ppl if u use the right tools like education of course.
Alexis Perez
This book is such an amazing book! It's really a sad true story about a Puerto Rican gang member really went through a lot of hard circumstances since he was a child and how each day he had suffered from pure pressure,drugs and sex. Reymundo, a gang member had went to a drug addiction to an amazing opportunity to see his mom again and actually go to college without even graduating from high school and actually being accepted to be in college and trying to do his best to stay strong be away from ...more
Rigoberto
1. Plot Overview (Don’t give the ending away!) What did you like about the plot? Did it move quickly or slowly? What didn’t you like? Was it interesting or not? Why? Give details!

The thing i liked about this plot was that he gave alot information about what was happening and it made me feel like i was their. It moved pretty quickly .





2. Character Overview: Who were you favorite characters? Describe them—what were they like? Did they remind you of someone? Who/how? How are you like them, even in s
...more
Nasir Venable
Once A King Always A King by Reymundo Sanchez is a sequel to My Bloody Life. It's about Sanchez and how he overcomes the life of a gang-banger. In the beginning he made endeavors to pursue a better life but always fell victim to drugs, women, and the streets. He found it difficult to make a life outside of the Latin Kings because everyone part of the gang or somewhat affiliated with them recognized him. He lived with a gang member named Spanky who was a drug dealer and allowed Sanchez to live wi ...more
Daniel Auquilla
The author is Reymundo Sanchezand and the book is about 286. The name of the book is "Once a King Always a King". The title of the book tell me about what the book is going to be. And how he became a king and how he was going to come out of it. the title does fit with the book because is most about him being a king and trying to let his life of a gangsbenger began. the jacket of the book is showing a crown the represent n=being a king and it has five pointy sides that also represent being a lat ...more
Martin Valenzuela
This book is about a boy named Reymundo Sanchez (lil loco)and how he left the life as a gang banger being in the biggest gang the Latin Kings. He tell the story of how thy treated him and because he was a Latin King he couldn't just be a normal person anymore. Also how going to jail made him realize about his life and that he needed to change before it was to late. Whether it was one of his own member to kill him for wanting to leave or just a rival gang. He also talks about all the events that ...more
Edgar
The author is an ex Latin King that was Puerto Rican named Reymundo Sanchez. This book has 286 pages in it. The name of the book is called Once A King Always A King. The title gives a hint of what this book is about. Yes, it does spark an intrest to me about this book becauyse I wonder how the life of a king is after he gets out of his gang. This book does fit well with the text because it has to do with this one king who started to try and get out of that life-style because he met this beautifu ...more
Vanessa Alejos
Mar 12, 2012 Vanessa Alejos is currently reading it
The name of the book is Once A King Always A King by Reymundo Sanchez. They where 286 pages on the book. The name of the book makes me think that they are going to talk about somebody's life being on gangs. It does fit well with the text because it shows and explains on how Reymundo wanted to get out of gangs but it was to hard for him. The book cover says everything because on the cover it has a picture of a crown and a face meaning is going to be about someone that is inbolve in gangs. They a ...more
Jose
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Andy Davalos
this book is about a men who has came out of the gang life before but he returns to it.it it all happened in new york.the story talks about his experiences as a gangbanger as well as how it changed his life and what will come of it.i gave this book % stars because it was very intersting and i love reading about a life that not many people would know or understand about. it is one of the reasons that i came to reading this book.in the story rey says "ive been out of drugs for almost 3 months now. ...more
Javy Perez
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
Al Hansana
This book was very well worth reading. Due to the fact it just had that andrenaline rush where you try to put it down but you can't stop reading and so you just want to keep going on with it and finish it. The book is about a gang member who basically left the gang but as you're a king, you never get to stop being a king. So events come up and basically hit him where it leads him to tragic incidents and losing things he has.
" My past was known, my intentions-good or bad- expected and accepted" -
...more
Angel
Well after I read the first book(My Bloody Life), I knew that there had to be another one and I was completely interested when I found this book laying around in my house. This book got me shocked and unexpected at some points of his life going through troubles. The book was about a notorious gang member who tries to escape his past and tries to change his life around. Even though Ray who was lil loco but matured and realized he don't want to be apart of a gang no more, so he turned his life aro ...more
Sara Pelg


I absolutely loved "My Bloody Life," when I found out there was a sequel (quite a few years after reading MBL for the first time) I was so excited to find out what happened afterwards. Unfortunately, my excitement was well wasted. There only seems to be one theme in this book, sex, sex, sex...oh, and did I mention sex? C'mon, you cannot tell me that's all that happened after the first book. This was actually one of the very few books I considered not finishing, but being such a fan of the first
...more
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Aiossa's 14/15 Se...: David Leal book review 1 3 Nov 08, 2012 06:35PM  
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“I'm pissed off because of all the fuckin' people who shut their eyes while others are victimized because it doesn't benefit them to get involved. It pissed me off that every-fuckin'-body is such a tough guy until a tough situation is actually present to them. Then they become crying little pussies blaming the world and everything in it.” 1 likes
“I'm pissed off because of all the fuckin' people who shut their eyes while others are victimized because it doesn't benefit them to get involved. It pissed me off that every-fuckin'-body is such a tough guy until a tough situation is actually present to them. Then they become crying little pussies blaming the world and everything it in.” 0 likes
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