Non­fic­tion

One-Legged Mon­goose: Secrets, Lega­cies, and Com­ing of Age in the 1950’s New York

  • From the Publisher
September 1, 2020

One-Legged Mon­goose is an account of my life from ages 10 to 12, nar­rat­ed by the boy I was then. It begins in 1953, when our par­ents trans­ferred my younger broth­er Stephen and me from pub­lic school on Long Island to a Yeshi­va in Queens, a four-hour round-trip com­mute. At my old school, I’d been a prodi­gious fight­er, pro­tect­ing Stephen against those who hurt him or insult­ed me and my reli­gion. At Yeshi­va, I was plunged into a new world of kids who fought with words, not fists, and I had to adapt.

At the core of the book is the secret I lived with; my moth­er had been beat­ing me severe­ly since I’d been two. Over the next two years, I faced a bout of polio and a seri­ous car acci­dent. I was an avid read­er: The Old Man and the Sea, The Red Badge of Courage. Books pro­vid­ed solace and a vehi­cle through which I tried to make sense of my risk-tak­ing life.

One-Legged Mon­goose is a sto­ry about hope and possibility.

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