Forced to leave a life he loved as a schoolboy soccer sensation in pre-WWII Italy, Gino Gerardi rebelled when he first came to Brooklyn. He dropped out of high school, drifted from one low-paying job to another and gambling quickly replaced soccer as his favorite thing to do. Then he fell in love.
A dozen years later, Gino continues to adore his wife and now has three young sons but he still cannot resist the lure of a card game. Just one week before Christmas in 1956, he loses his entire paycheck playing poker. In an effort to salvage the Holiday for his boys and save his disintegrating marriage, he borrows money from the most notorious loan shark in Brooklyn. What he's being forced to do to repay the mobster sets up the Christmas Day surprise ending to this compelling tale.
It’s a story that recaptures the powerful impact of family, the Catholic Church, and organized crime, on the daily lives of the millions of people who lived in big-city Italian-American neighborhoods during the 1950s.
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