By Donna Jo Napoli
An unforgettable novel, in response to a real tale, approximately racism opposed to Italian americans within the South in 1899.
Fourteen-year-old Calogero, his uncles, and his cousins are six Sicilians dwelling within the small city of Tallulah, Louisiana, miles from any in their countrymen. They develop greens and promote them at their stand and of their grocery store.
Some humans welcome the immigrants; so much don't. Calogero's family members is stuck in the course of tensions among the black and white groups. As Calogero struggles to evolve to Tallulah, he's startled and extremely joyful through the chance of middle of the night gator hunts within the bayou and through his robust emotions for Patricia, a sharp-witted, sweet-natured black woman. in the meantime, on a daily basis, and each false impression among the white neighborhood and the Sicilians, deliver Calogero and his kin in the direction of a terrifying, violent confrontation.
In this affecting and unforgettable novel, Donna Jo Napoli's encouraged learn and spare, appealing language take the vintage immigrant tale to new degrees of emotion and searing fact. Alligator Bayou tells a narrative that each one americans may still understand.
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Extra info for Alligator Bayou
Charles says to Cirone. ” He holds out his hand to shake. ” “No dirtier than yours,” says Cirone. Charles laughs and they shake. Then Cirone shakes hands and exchanges names with Rock and Ben, too. But they all keep calling him Dancer. ” asks Rock. ” Cirone says in Sicilian in my ear. I look quickly at the boys. I don’t want them hearing Sicilian; it reminds them we’re foreigners. I want them to be friends. Our first American friends. But the boys don’t seem to care. “I don’t know,” I answer in Sicilian.
Out front we hear a man arguing with Francesco in English. Shouting. The man stomps off into the night, throwing curses over his shoulder. Cirone and I crouch off to the side. It’s so dark, all we can see is the tip of Francesco’s cigar, glowing red when he sucks on it. And he’s sucking fast. Red, red, red, red. He’s mad, all right. Cirone and I sneak to the back and climb in through a window. We quick move the sacks of pinecones in our bed that were doubling for us and stash them. We dive under the sheet fully clothed.
Mrs. Rogers nods. “You got sense. Next time I’ll send Lila alone. ” Off she goes, Lila following. I slap my hat back on my head. “Yes, ma’am,” comes a taunting whisper from behind. I turn. And she’s there, hair drawn into two braids that glisten in the sun. I grin. ” Patricia takes off her shoes and slips them into her cloth bag. She walks past me on wide brown feet rimmed with pink. ” So that’s why Mrs. Rogers came here rather than the “other” grocery—Francesco’s store. And everyone’s heard about the fight, and probably knows I visited Frank Raymond this morning, too.