The Boy Who Granted Dreams
written by Luca Di Fulvio
published by Bastei Entertainment, 2015
Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Where I stopped reading: 25%
Why I stopped reading: I should have liked this book, but I couldn’t get into it. There is a lot of rape and violence that takes away from the story and its characters. I know that sometimes a character can overcome a certain situation, but this book was not moving fast enough and there was no promise of overcoming anything. So sadly, I’m not going to finish it.
What others have rated this book: According to Goodreads, the average rating for The Boy Who Granted Dreams is 4.09 stars. It looks like a majority of readers gave this book 5 stars. 61% of the reviews on Amazon are 5 stars. At Barnes & Noble, there is one 5-star review. Just because I didn’t finish this book doesn’t mean you won’t.
About the book – from Goodreads: 1909. Ellis Island. Arriving off one of the many transatlantic freighters are Cetta Luminita and her illegitimate baby boy Natale, fleeing the poverty and violence of their Southern Italian hometown. Having sacrificed everything, and endured every possible shame, Cetta has but one wish: that her baby should be an American, and grow up with the freedom to decide his own destiny. As they alight, US Immigration officials give Natale a new name: Christmas.
Growing up in the Lower East Side of New York with his mother, who works as a prostitute, Christmas is determined to be a success, whether a decent person or a gangster. The city is ruled by gangs from each community, Italian, Jewish and Irish, and survival is dependent on ruthlessness and strength. But Christmas has a vivid imagination, and an ability to tell stories that people want to believe…and thus is born his imaginary gang, the Diamond Dogs, which earns him respect within the ghetto. All this changes the day he saves the life of a rich Jewish girl Ruth, and despite their different backgrounds, he falls hopelessly in love with her. When circumstance tears them apart, Christmas vows that he will find her, by any means possible.
A sweeping saga of love and hate set in the Roaring Twenties, The Boy Who Granted Dreams is the story of Christmas and Ruth; the story of the dawn of radio, Broadway and Hollywood; and above all, a story about believing in the power of dreams.