DANETTE VIGILANTE

AUTHOR

The Trouble with Half a Moon by author Danette Vigilante
THE TROUBLE WITH HALF A MOON by author Danette Vigilante at Indiebound
THE TROUBLE WITH HALF A MOON by author Danette Vigilante at Amazon
THE TROUBLE WITH HALF A MOON by author Danette Vigilante at Barnes & Noble
THE TROUBLE WITH HALF A MOON by author Danette Vigilante at Books-a-Million

THE TROUBLE WITH HALF A MOON

A Sunshine State Young Readers Award Nominee 2012-2013
Thirteen year old Dellie lives with the guilt that her little brother’s death was her fault. Her mother cries all the time and because she wants Dellie to stay safe, she keeps her inside as much as she can. It doesn’t matter that Dellie longs to go outside to be like other girls or that there’s a boy she likes and he likes her too. All that matters to her mother is that she’s safe at home. So, Dellie has no choice but to watch the world of her housing project through her second story window.

Things start to change soon after new neighbors move in on the first floor. Trouble like this has never happened in Dellie’s building before. Now there are men fighting on the stoop, gunshots echoing through the night and Corey, a hungry and abused five year old boy knocking on her door looking for something to eat. Corey reminds Dellie of her brother and even though their friendship is dangerous, she wonders if this time, she’ll be able to do what needs to be done. Will she be able to save Corey?

Read an Excerpt

The noise wakes up the entire building. It’s louder than loud, like a firecracker.

Before I know what I’m doing, I’m out of bed. My parents are already in the dark living room.

None of our neighbors dare go out into the hallway. Instead, they stay behind their doors asking questions through the cracks.
“What’s going on out there?” Mr. Brown, from apartment 2C, asks. His voice sounds croaky with sleep.

“Everything okay?” That sounds like Mrs. Lawrence. She’s really old and lives by herself in 2F. I imagine her hunched over by the door with her hand on the doorknob, listening for an answer.

A woman is screaming and there’s some loud crying. It starts and stops like a car trying to jump to life. My best friend, Kayla, lives upstairs near the roof door, so I hope whatever is happening isn’t coming from there.

When my father grabs his baseball bat, I know he’s also worried. “It’s June, too early for firecrackers,” he says. “That was a gunshot.”

“Oh, no,” my mother says. There have been shootings in other buildings around here, but this is the first time it’s happened where I live.

My teeth start to chatter. I can’t make them stop, not even when I clench them.

“Daddy, please move away from the door. They might shoot again.” It comes out funny and I have to say it a second time. But instead of moving, he looks through the peephole. Every apartment in the projects has one. My mother tells me never to open the door without looking through it first.

“Tenga cuidado,” my mother says.

“Don’t worry. I’ll be careful.” Dad presses his ear against our door. “Maybe someone needs help. I’ll go see if there’s anything I can do.”

“But I don’t hear any noise now. Do you?” I whisper, watching for his thick eyebrows to answer me first. “Do you? Maybe whatever it was is over now. It could be, right? Let’s just go back to bed.” He doesn’t move. “Please!”

My mother shushes me and leads me to the couch.

I bring my knees to my chin and stretch my nightgown over my legs. My mother sits next to me and holds my hand.

“I have to go see if everything is okay, Dellie,” my father says, unlocking the door.

“No, you might get hurt! You don’t know who’s out there.”

“She’s right, it’s not a good idea,” my mother says, tightening her grasp on my hand. “I need you to stay where I know you’re safe.”

“I’ll be okay,” he says, opening the door and letting the hallway light flood the room. The veins in his hands bulge as he grips the bat.

“Dad, no! That can’t stop a bullet.” Panic pushes its way into my head and causes a quiet terror inside me. The air has been sucked out of the room and I can’t catch my breath no matter how hard I try. My eyes go blurry and I can’t see. I don’t want to do this again. Please, make it stop.

“I’ll be fine. Lock the door after I leave. I won’t be long,” my father says, stepping into the hallway.

The room feels darker now that my father is on the other side of the door.

THE TROUBLE WITH HALF A MOON by author Danette Vigilante at Indiebound
THE TROUBLE WITH HALF A MOON by author Danette Vigilante at Amazon
THE TROUBLE WITH HALF A MOON by author Danette Vigilante at Barnes & Noble
THE TROUBLE WITH HALF A MOON by author Danette Vigilante at Books-a-Million

School Library Journal

Dellie’s story will speak to young people who’ve needed a little faith to get them through tough times. Interesting scenarios, like the cloaked Jamaican woman who moves in next door, provide interest to an already well-developed story.”

Kirkus

The first-person, present-tense narration allows readers to feel Dellie’s pain and confusion…Readers cannot help but cheer for Dellie and the little boy who helps pull her family together. Rich secondary characters add depth and dimension to this fast-paced tale of bereavement, forgiveness and healing.”

From Booklist

What will grab readers in this first novel is the realistic sense of the diverse neighborhood community, both rough and caring. With lots of fast, immediate dialogue, the characters’ grief, anger, and heartbreaking coming-to-terms are realistic.”

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