Love Conquers Racism

Yonkers is a picturesque city on the Hudson River, but beneath the surface racism runs rampant and often explodes into the open. It’s 1969 when blacks and whites don’t mix in this highly segregated, working-class town. Gutsy white girl Cookie Colangelo loved her black kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Kerry, because she taught Cookie to love books. Even though people told Cookie if she let Mrs. Kerry touch her, she would turn black too, Cookie knew that wasn’t true. After Cookie was beaten by a nun at a Catholic school, she loses her innocence, and struggles to survive in a world that is racist and unjust.  She alternates between being a gangster and a hippie and is going down the wrong path as a small-time drug dealer. Then she meets shy black boy Herman Lynch, who is a natural dancer and helps Cookie to fix her wounded knee by teaching her to dance. As their friendship develops, Herman opens up to Cookie about the dark secret he hasn’t been able to share with anyone—he’s gay. Cookie and Herman experience racism at the hands of other kids and grown-ups, especially a neighborhood busybody, the racist white widow, Fran Ochiogrosso, and the local Mafioso Louie Santamassino. These two grown-ups turn out to be Cookie’s and Herman’s greatest champions. Unbeknownst to Herman and Cookie, all along they have had an emotional bond in common with Cookie’s kindergarten teacher Mrs. Kerry. [On Amazon, Check out YONKERS Yonkers! by Patricia Vaccarino]

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Patricia Vaccarino

Patricia Vaccarino has over 30 years' expertise working with a wide range of national and international clients, in all areas of public relations: managing worldwide campaigns for global companies and developing strategy for small companies, startup ventures, and individuals.


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