Monday, August 18, 2008

The Bookmaker de mi amigo Michael

el martes pasado salió al mercado norteamericano, via HarperCollins, un libro de un buen y leal amigo, Michael J. Agovino. Es su primer libro y esa una de esas historias q ha tenido dentro desde siempre. Entre otras cosas xq es la suya, la de su padre y la de su familia. Es un libro de no-ficción, un memoir, acerca de crecer en un proyecto urbanístico llamado Co-Op City en la punta norte de la isla de Manhattan y, a pesar de ser de una famila más bien modesta, tener la posiblidad de tener unos alucinantes veraneos culturales en Europa, financiados por su padre, el que, paralelo a su trabajo como un empleado municipal, manejaba apuestas ilegales.

bien x este libro,
lo recomiendo al 100% y
y bien x Mike

"The book offers a unique portrait of the mutability of class...Agovino strikes a nice balance between the histories of a beloved place and a turbulent family. A generally engrossing narrative of class and mobility in urban America."
— Kirkus Reviews

"For Agovino and his family, life does not build toward a crescendo. It grows exponentially, then subsides, puttering along, waiting for that next spurt. Throughout it all, family is there. A nice story of an individual coping with a unique situation yet always buttressed by family."
— Booklist

posteo aca una leve entrevista q apareció en New York Magazine:

Presumably your friends didn’t know how tenuous your finances were—they just knew you were one of the only kids in Co-op City who’d been to the Rijksmuseum.
It’s not something I advertised to my friends at the time. But it wasn’t a judgmental place—I will say that about Co-op City. Some people were beating their kids or wife or had alcohol problems. Everyone had their own stuff going on. It was forgiving that way.

Your mother was always begging your dad to stow away some money to move out—but he was always waiting for that one big score. Do you resent him for squandering the family’s savings on gambling and lavish European trips?
It was a bit reckless at times, but I’m glad he took us to those places, or I would have had a much narrower view of the world. In a way, he was ahead of his time, because look at this debt problem we have now. My mother would say, “Why don’t we invest in stocks?” And he’d say, “That’s gambling, too.” She said he was only making excuses. [Today] when I ask people if I should be in the stock market, they say the same thing. Now people just use credit cards instead of bouncing checks.

Are you a better financial planner?
Not really. I’ve never been tempted to gamble, but my 401(k) is losing money like everyone else’s.

Your father wound up declaring bankruptcy, and your parents have moved out of the city. Do you have to support them?
No, but it could come to that. I don’t want to get into it—but that could be a second book.

Your mother didn’t seem too keen on your writing about this. Have they read it?
My father did. My mother hasn’t, for two reasons. One, she’s the more introverted one. And two, she’s third-generation Sicilian—she still has the omertà thing.