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Brooklyn 1977. April Lundquist lives in Dyker Heights, a neighborhood populated by the Mafia. Three hit men live on her block: Francesco "Frankie the Crunch' Consiglione, Vincent "Gorgeous Vinny" Persico, and Salvatore "Soft Sal" Luciano. When Soft Sal approaches April and her best friend, Brandi Rinaldi, for a favor, well . . . the girls can't refuse. But does the favor, along with the crisp hundred-dollar bills that turn up in their schoolbooks, mean that April and Brandi are nowinwith the Mob? Will April be able to get "protection" for her older brother, Matt, when he makes the big mistake of falling for the daughter of a big crime boss? And will April's connection to Soft Sal bring her closer to Dominick DeMao, bad-boy rocker and heartbreaker? Soft Sal, Matt, Dom . . . in April's neighborhood the guys stir up all the trouble, but April wouldn't have it any other way. From the Hardcover edition.
For thirteen-year-old Judy Strand, summers in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, bustle with games of stickball played in the street, fun-filled outings to neighboring Coney Island, and her family's yearly trip to the Catskill Mountains. But in July 1944, Judy's carefree days and her innocence are shaken by a discovery: The man she's always called Pa isn't her real father. Even more shocking, Judy learns that the father she doesn't remember was an alcoholic who abandoned his family. That's why Judy's mother emigrated to America from Norway. Now Judy feels jumbled inside: She's angry at her mother for keeping the truth from her-and she's suddenly awkward around Pa. Nothing her parents say soothes the hurt. At first, even the attentions of Jacob Jacobsen don't make her feel any better. Judy likes Jacob; it's just that his dad's drinking binges hit too close to home. Ashamed, Judy doesn't want anyone to find out her secret. But as misfortune befalls Jacob, Judy's close friends, and her own family, Judy rallies to their side, and in the process recognizes that growing up encompasses forgiveness-of others and of herself.
A MOTHER WHO split for another man. A father who works 24/7. An older brother who excels at everything--and smokes a lot of weed. A best friend, of the feminine persuasion, who only wants to be a friend, and who's shooting a film set in cool Greenwich Village, New York. Dylan Fontaine's life seems to be full of drama he can't control. But when he stars in his best friend's movie, Dylan discovers that, sometimes, life's big shake-ups force you to take risks--and to step into the spotlight.
Noah Nordstrom has been dissing the religious beliefs of his father, who hosts a popular Christian radio show and whom Noah accuses of spreading hate. When two local gay teens are murdered, Noah's anti-evangelism intensifies--he's convinced that the killer is a caller on his dad's program. Then Noah meets Will Reed, a cool guy. But when he learns that Will is gay, Noah gets a little weirded out. Especially since Will seems really into him. Noah gives Will the brush-off. Meanwhile, the killer is still at large . . . and soon Noah finds the next victim. It's Will. Racked with guilt, Noah decides to investigate. He knows the serial killer is targeting gay teens, but only those who live in foster homes, whose deaths are not that important to society; they are the less-dead. Noah, however, is determined to prove that someone cares. With the help of Will's journal, which he pocketed at the scene of the crime and in which the killer has written clues, Noah closes in on an opponent more dangerous than he can guess. From the Hardcover edition.
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