Alligator Bayou   by Donna Jo Napoli

By Donna Jo Napoli

An unforgettable  novel, in line with 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 residing 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 relatives is stuck in the course of tensions among the black and white groups. As Calogero struggles to evolve to Tallulah, he's startled and delighted by way of the risk of nighttime gator hunts within the bayou and by means of his robust emotions for Patricia, a sharp-witted, sweet-natured black lady. in the meantime, each day, and each false impression among the white neighborhood and the Sicilians, carry Calogero and his kin toward a terrifying, violent confrontation.
In this affecting and unforgettable novel, Donna Jo Napoli's encouraged examine and spare, attractive 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 recognize.

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Ugly as a pox. ” I shake my head. “I didn’t think so. ” Charles laughs and looks at the others. ” Rock nods. “And the best eating, well… that’s after catching. ” He looks at the third boy, who gives a nod. Rock puts his finger in the middle of my chest. “When the time right, we going hunting. ” five I’m sitting at the kitchen table waiting. Somehow, all the worry of this day has left me starving. Francesco finally shows up. I’d hug him, but he’s still got that shotgun in his hands. I keep my eyes on it.

Colored boys ain’t allowed in the boys’ class at the town schoolhouse, and colored girls ain’t allowed in the girls’ class. So we use the church basement. Boys and girls together. ” She throws her shoulders back. “Course, we read Bible verses. At the opening and closing of the day. ” I thought it was a Baptist school. Sheriff Lucas told Francesco that Italians aren’t white according to the laws of Louisiana, so I wasn’t allowed in the town schoolhouse on South Chestnut Street, either. The sheriff said I could go to the church school—Patricia’s school.

The day following that is Sunday, so I’ll invite Dr. Hodge over for limoncello after he gets out of his fancy church. He’ll say no—they all say no—but I’ll insist. He’ll see how fancy we can be. With a new wood porch, white and clean. As good as his. We’ll have a nice talk. ” Wasting all that white paint—all that money—just to impress the doctor? Supper is quiet; things have settled down. Francesco’s talk with Dr. Hodge yesterday morning went well. Francesco told Carlo all about it, and I eavesdropped.

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