Rigoberto González Recommends

Tetched by Thaddeus Rutkowski is a fitting second punch follow-up to his debut novel Roughhouse, which also straddles the startling fine line between pleasure and pain. Erotic pleasure. Erotic pain. But this is not a playful foray into S&M–though it takes as many risks–Rutkowski’s journey is much more complex than that as he unravels both psychology and sexuality through one of the most memorable of protagonists: an awkward biracial youth who escapes the small town repressions (and oppressions) to explore the big city ones. Only the thick-skinned will resist the urge to flinch; and the meek will find it difficult to leave this enticing book of unconvetional lust and love. By the end of this novel, the real world will seem a little less shocking, and, thankfully, a little less dull. I highly recommend both these titles that connect preadolescence to adulthood in a most unusual and intelligent way.”

Rigoberto González is the author of four books, most recently the controversial children’s book Antonio’s Card. The recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship and a contributing editor to Poets & Writers Magazine, he is currently associate professor of English and Latina/o Studies at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.