Did Angel steal Mr. Stiles' truck in Buried Onions? 

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Gary Soto never explicitly answers this question nor does the reader ever find out if Angel killed Juan, as Norma suggests in the scene at her pool. It is all just "chisme" or gossip among those in the barrio where Eddie, the protagonist in the book, grows up. Eddie is...

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Gary Soto never explicitly answers this question nor does the reader ever find out if Angel killed Juan, as Norma suggests in the scene at her pool. It is all just "chisme" or gossip among those in the barrio where Eddie, the protagonist in the book, grows up. Eddie is not even sure if Angel is after him. Nevertheless he continues to imagine scenarios where Angel will pull the gun that was given to him by Eddie's tía (aunt). Angel is not to be trusted and the two characters fight twice in the last two chapters. 

The only clue to whether Angel took Mr. Stiles's truck is when Eddie questions José about it in the hospital. José, Eddie's friend from high school who joined the Marines, went to claim the stolen truck when he was stabbed by "cholos." He tells Eddie he saw who they were but did not know them. This would lead one to believe that Angel was not involved. 

The fight between Eddie and Angel, however, is inevitable. Eddie is trying to break away from the poverty and violence which Angel represents. There is no ultimate victor in this battle but the last scene of the novel gives the reader hope as Eddie sheds the last of his "childhood tears" in the onion field.

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