A stunning debut novel about survival and friendship on the streets of New York City.
Best friends Ray and Jose are not your typical thirteen-year-olds. They?ve escaped foster care and juvenile detention centers to live on their own together in an abandoned building located near Manhattan Park called Ten-Mile River. With no use for school or families, street-smart Jose and bookish, introspective Ray have everything they need in each other. They are closer than brothers until they meet Trini. She?s smart, beautiful, and confident, and they both fall for her immediately. As tension creeps into their relationship, Ray must struggle to find an identity separate from Jose and try to envision a future for himself beyond Jose and Ten-Mile River.
This is Paul Griffin?s first novel, and his spare moving prose and uncanny ear for authentic dialogue is guaranteed to garner many fans.
Griffin makes a striking debut with this gritty, dialogue-heavy novel about two homeless boys. Ray and Jos , 14 and 15, have survived foster care and juvenile detention together, and now hide out from their parole officers in a burned-out stationhouse in New York City's Ten Mile River park. They make their way by stealing, working occasionally, and trying to stay under police radar. Ray is bigger and smarter (he reads anything he can, and especially likes physics), but Jos , a proven matador, is boss. They are friends to the end until Ray meets and falls for the beautiful Trini, who encourages both boys to go straight, like her. But Ray's view of himself and his understanding of loyalty also leads him to set up Trini with Jos . As Griffin illuminates Ray's often dangerous world, readers will feel for themselves Ray's dilemma and the difficulties he faces in choosing between Jos , drawn to the fast buck, and his own desires to make something of himself. The language is tough but convincing, the setting authentic, the characters memorable and their struggles played out with a complexity that respects the audience's intelligence. Ages 12 up.