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First appearance For my little brother
Last appearance For my little brother
Created by Enoch Leung
Full name Garrett Garcia Alonto Tañag
Gender Male
Occupation Garbage scavenger
Family Tañag family
Parent(s) Garrett's mother; Garrett's father
Sibling(s) Julio (older); Evan (younger)
Religion Christianity
Nationality Filipino
Friends Ricky

Garrett is the protagonist and narrator of the novel For my little brother. He is a ten year old garbage scavenger on Smokey Mountain, a large landfill in Manila, and lives in poverty along with his mother and his two brothers. In For my little brother, he is shown running away from home and joining a street gang in the hopes of finding enough money to send his younger brother Evan back to school.


Garrett is the second-born child in his family, succeeding his older brother Julio and preceding his younger brother Evan. Not much is known about Garrett's life, although it is presumed that he grew up on the mountain. It is revealed that Garrett's father left the family when he was eight, and Julio left the family when he was nine, leaving him alone with his mother and his younger brother. Prior to his father's departure, the three brothers were able to spend half a day at school and the other half scavenging.[1]

Despite his father's and his older brother's departures, Garrett surprisingly feels little connection and emotion with them—at least, compared to the feelings he has for Evan. It is revealed later on in For my little brother that neither his father nor his older brother had developed much of a bond with him or Evan. Both Garrett and Evan, however, are aware of the importance their father had on their income, and losing their father resulted in the three brothers having to spend most of their time working on the mountain.

Relationship with Evan[edit]

Garrett's relationship with his younger brother Evan forms the basis of the book, where Garrett's adoration and love for Evan motivates him to run away from home in the first place. Their relationship and intimacy with each other is evidenced early on in the novel.[2] He thinks about his brother numerous times throughout the novel, and views him as his "lifeline".[3] He also experiences a hallucinatory foreshadowing of his reunion with his younger brother twice in prison, and frequently mentions him in his conversations with Ricky.


The name Garrett was derived from the English names Gerald and Gerard,[4] the former of which means "rule of the spear",[5] and the latter of which means "brave, hardy".[6] The name symbolizes Garrett's brave and resilient nature throughout the novel, even despite his background and his inexperience.

In the Philippines, most names are of Spanish origin due to the four centuries of Spanish colonial rule over the archipelago; in recent years, however, the influence of the United States have encouraged the spread of English names in the country. There are very few "true" Filipino names in use today.[7]


  1. Leung, Enoch. For my little brother. "My father was lean and strong, almost perfect for the mountain, and he worked very hard to provide for all of us. With him, we could at least spend half a day at school; a short amount of time, but it was school nonetheless." Retrieved 6 July 2017.
  2. Leung, Enoch. For my little brother. "[Evan] hugged me closely and laid his head on my shoulder, like he always did every day when I came home from the mountain. I put my right arm around his body and we sat there together, quietly eating, contemplating." Retrieved 6 July 2017.
  3. Leung, Enoch. For my little brother. "'Remember Evan: you're my lifeline. I'll always think about you, and that will keep me going. Don't forget about me... and I won't forget about you.'" Retrieved 6 July 2017.