Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble, and Coming of Age in the Bronx

Front Cover
Simon and Schuster, Feb 10, 2004 - Biography & Autobiography - 409 pages
This New York Times bestseller intimately depicts urban life in a gripping book that slips behind cold statistics and sensationalism to reveal the true sagas lurking behind the headlines of gangsta glamour.

In her extraordinary bestseller, Adrian Nicole LeBlanc immerses readers in the intricacies of the ghetto, revealing the true sagas lurking behind the headlines of gangsta glamour, gold-drenched drug dealers, and street-corner society. Focusing on two romances—Jessica’s dizzying infatuation with a hugely successful young heroin dealer, Boy George, and Coco’s first love with Jessica's little brother, Cesar—Random Family is the story of young people trying to outrun their destinies. Jessica and Boy George ride the wild adventure between riches and ruin, while Coco and Cesar stick closer to the street, all four caught in a precarious dance between survival and death. Friends get murdered; the DEA and FBI investigate Boy George; Cesar becomes a fugitive; Jessica and Coco endure homelessness, betrayal, the heartbreaking separation of prison, and, throughout it all, the insidious damage of poverty.

Charting the tumultuous cycle of the generations—as girls become mothers, boys become criminals, and hope struggles against deprivation—LeBlanc slips behind the cold statistics and sensationalism and comes back with a riveting, haunting, and true story.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - deldevries - LibraryThing

well written, but I'm just not interested in the story and the characters (people). This doesn't fit my criteria for one of the 100 New Classics. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - jasonli - LibraryThing

A surprisingly-thrilling and superbly-researched real-life story about a family, struggling to grow, struggling to get by in the roughest parts of New York during the 80s and 90s. Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
3
Section 2
19
Section 3
24
Section 4
38
Section 5
49
Section 6
60
Section 7
70
Section 8
76
Section 24
258
Section 25
264
Section 26
279
Section 27
284
Section 28
299
Section 29
306
Section 30
311
Section 31
317

Section 9
92
Section 10
103
Section 11
112
Section 12
123
Section 13
130
Section 14
139
Section 15
149
Section 16
170
Section 17
182
Section 18
188
Section 19
200
Section 20
204
Section 21
215
Section 22
232
Section 23
241
Section 32
329
Section 33
336
Section 34
343
Section 35
351
Section 36
361
Section 37
366
Section 38
372
Section 39
386
Section 40
394
Section 41
401
Section 42
407
Section 43
Section 44
Copyright

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About the author (2004)

Adrian Nicole LeBlanc is a frequent contributor to The New York Times Magazine and other publications. She has also been the recipient of numerous awards, including a Bunting fellowship from Radcliffe, a MacDowell Colony residency, and a Soros Media Fellowship. She lives in Manhattan. Random Family, which was short-listed for the international Lettre Ulysses Award for the Art of Reportage, is her first book.