I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter

Juanga Character Analysis

When Lorena befriends the flamboyant and charismatic Juanga—a gay classmate—Julia begins feeling jealous of their relationship. Juanga is petty and sarcastic from time to time, but good at heart. His sexuality has alienated him from his family, and his parents frequently kick him out of the house, forcing him to crash on friends’ couches or stay at one of his many lovers’ homes. In spite of his surface frivolity, Juanga ends up being a real friend to Julia, and shows her empathy and compassion after her suicide attempt.

Juanga Quotes in I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter

The I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter quotes below are all either spoken by Juanga or refer to Juanga. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Knopf edition of I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter published in 2017.
Chapter 7 Quotes

The sky is still dark, but it’s beginning to brighten. There are beautiful, faint streaks of orange over the lake. It looks like it’s been cracked open.

I think of Jazmyn’s face when I told her about Olga. Everywhere I go, my sister’s ghost is hovering.

Related Characters: Julia Reyes (speaker), Olga Reyes, Lorena, Juanga, Jazmyn
Page Number: 97
Explanation and Analysis:
Quotes explanation long mobile

Unlock explanations and citation info for this and every other I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter quote.

Plus so much more...

Get LitCharts A+
Already a LitCharts A+ member? Sign in!
Chapter 10 Quotes

“Sometimes it’s like you think you’re too good for every­thing. You’re too hard on people.” Lorena doesn’t make eye contact.

“That’s because I am too good for everything! You think this is what I want? This sucks. This sucks so hard, I can’t take it sometimes.” I swing my arms, gesturing toward I don’t know what. I’m so angry my ears feel as if they’re on fire.

Related Characters: Julia Reyes (speaker), Lorena (speaker), Juanga
Related Symbols: Food and Hunger
Page Number: 129
Explanation and Analysis:
Quotes explanation short mobile
Get the entire I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter LitChart as a printable PDF.
I am not your perfect mexican daughter.pdf.medium

Juanga Character Timeline in I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter

The timeline below shows where the character Juanga appears in I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 7
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
...friend—a boy who is “gay as a rainbow-colored unicorn.” The boy goes by the nickname Juanga, and Julia hates him immediately. In history class, Lorena tells Julia that Juanga has invited... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
...parents are asleep, and then stuffs pillows into her bed and sneaks out to meet Juanga and Lorena on the street. When Juanga pulls up, he tells Julia that though he... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
...neighborhood, Julia finds herself dreaming of having a place like it to herself one day. Juanga and Lorena socialize with lots of people and drink, but Julia nurses a single beer... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
...to ask Jazmyn more questions, but can’t find the girl anywhere. After the party, as Juanga drunkenly drives Lorena and Julia home, Julia thinks about how her “sister’s ghost is hovering”... (full context)
Chapter 9
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
...from Lorena, and the two of them go to the event with a group of friends—Juanga has gone MIA after running off with an older man. Julia looks down on the... (full context)
Chapter 10
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
On the day of the field trip, Julia wanders around with Lorena and Juanga—back from his love affair, and still inseparable from Lorena. While Lorena and Juanga gossip and... (full context)
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
Poverty and Entrapment Theme Icon
As Juanga, Lorena, and Julia eat, Juanga begins talking about sex, and Lorena teases Julia for being... (full context)
Chapter 11
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
Family, Immigrant Cultural Identity, and the Self Theme Icon
...information: visit Olga’s work, try to get her transcripts from the community college, and ask Juanga to help her get in touch with Jazmyn. (full context)
Chapter 12
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
Family, Immigrant Cultural Identity, and the Self Theme Icon
Julia expresses jealousy over Lorena’s friendship with Juanga, but Lorena begs Julia to have some empathy—Juanga has a terrible home life, and his... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
...just live a normal, boring life. Still, Julia asks Lorena to get Jazmyn’s number through Juanga. Lorena agrees, though she says she doesn’t see the point in digging any deeper. (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
Family, Immigrant Cultural Identity, and the Self Theme Icon
On Monday, Juanga gives Julia the number for one of Jazmyn’s friends. Julia calls the girl, Maribel, and... (full context)
Chapter 15
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
Poverty and Entrapment Theme Icon
One wintry afternoon, Lorena insists on going sledding in the city with Julia and Juanga. Julia hasn’t hung out with the two of them very much lately, as they’ve been... (full context)
Chapter 17
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
...her room and gets in bed, looking forlornly out the window—until she spots Lorena and Juanga standing on the opposite corner, waving up at her like mad. (full context)
Chapter 18
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
...Julia’s lies that she’s been on a long backpacking trip through Europe. When Julia sees Juanga and Lorena, they both embrace her and tell her how happy they are to see... (full context)
Chapter 23
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Family, Immigrant Cultural Identity, and the Self Theme Icon
...he’s having trouble “forgiving” his son for being gay, Julia angrily speaks up, thinking of Juanga, but manages to calm herself down before she says anything too hurtful. When it’s Amá’s... (full context)
Chapter 25
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Poverty and Entrapment Theme Icon
A lot has happened since Julia left for Mexico. Juanga has a new boyfriend, Mr. Ingman is engaged to another teacher, and Lorena has missed... (full context)
Chapter 27
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
Poverty and Entrapment Theme Icon
...begins to lose hope that she’ll be able to go away to school after all. Juanga and Lorena urge her not to get discouraged—and remind her that if all else fails,... (full context)
Chapter 29
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Restlessness and Ambition Theme Icon
Family, Immigrant Cultural Identity, and the Self Theme Icon
Poverty and Entrapment Theme Icon
...her pack. Lorena has been accepted to nursing school and is waitressing part-time; she and Juanga are hoping to get an apartment together soon, once they’ve saved enough for a deposit.... (full context)