Billy Bathgate - E.L. Doctorow
The story of Billy Bathgate is one of a uniquely 'orphaned' boy from the Bronx taken under the wing of one of the deadliest gangsters in 1930s New York, Dutch Schultz. At just fifteen years old, Billy's cunning and drive to work hard propels him to find he is not only a good luck charm but a key player, and protege to Mr. Schultz himself. But the lifestyle of gangsterdom (my favorite word in the book) comes at a cost and the stakes are high, too high I believe for anyone fifteen years old to comprehend. The quality of storytelling is as good as the writing. Small, profound nuggets are woven into a wonderful, full work driven by action, violence and the seedy underbelly of Depression era gangsters. Darling's aunt & uncle gave us this book for Christmas last year and to be honest I picked it out from the shelf because of the cover illustration. Its a book I think Darling will really fall for, different from my usual flavors of fiction, but an excellent read that went by too fast. On that note, I've actually been reading up a storm since the move. Take all the time you spend driving during your day and replace that with reading. It's the best thing about public transportation and is probably going to be a game changer.