Tuesday 29 October 2013

Kicking the Sky

Finished October 16
Kicking the Sky by Anthony De Sa

This story overlaps and continues that of Barnacle Love. Because I just read Barnacle Love, I was perhaps more aware of the scene overlap between the two books. Here, the main character is Antonio Rebelo, Manuel's son and the story takes place in 1977. Emanuel Jaques, a young son of immigrants from the Azores who worked as a shoeshine boy was lured to his rape and murder, a crime that shocked Toronto at the time. Antonio and his friends Ricky and Manny are deeply affected by this incident. Tony's family has grown more protective, and pay more attention to how he spends his time, but because they both work, he is able to go off on his own or with his friends more than they realize. Manny's parents are less controlling and Manny is influenced by a new young man in the neighborhood, James, to engage in criminal behaviour. Also influenced by James is Ricky, a boy struggling to survive as he lives with his father, and engaging in dangerous behaviour. Taking on the role of a aunt, Tony's father's cousin Edite has come to Toronto from the US and is working for the Toronto Star. Edite has her own story of loss and family issues, that Tony gradually comes to know. Tony is both drawn to James and repelled by him, and this novel is a coming-of-age story for young Tony.

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