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L'autore racconta di sé da ragazzino e dei suoi tre amici del cuore Siamo a New York negli anni Sessanta e i uattro sono uniti da un sentimento più saldo di ualsiasi legame di sangue Astuti brillanti turbolenti vivono per strada in uno dei uartieri più malfamati della Grande Mela Hell's Kitchen Freuentano la scuola parrocchiale gestita da preti cattolici sbrigano lavoretti per un boss mafioso e improvvisano scherzi ai danni degli abitanti del uartiere riuscendo sempre a cavarsela a buon mercato Ma un giorno una beffa iniziata come un innocuo divertimento finisce in tragedia e i uattro si ritrovano dietro le sbarre di un riformatorio

10 thoughts on “Sleepers

  1. says:

    Sleeper collo 1 out of town hit man who spends the night after a local contract is completed 2 A juvenile sentenced to serve any period longer than nine months in a state managed facility Long time back a movie buff friend had highly recommended the movie Sleepers I never got around to watching the movie but remembered the name While book hunting in a second hand book shop I came across the book and realized that the movie is based on this bookThe book presents a tale of friendship loyalty brutality and revenge Trust me when I tell you – this is a pretty disturbing bookThe book revolves around four inseparable friends – John Reilly Tommy Marcano Michael Sullivan and the author Lorenzo Carcaterra The book starts with the story of the boys growing up in the rough neighbourhood of Hell’s Kitchen in the 1960sThe friends were like any boys – they loved movies comics sports baseball cards played childish pranks and surprisingly a couple of them also loved books They often took succor from books when they tried to escape the harshness of their lives They or rather their parents had a lot of problems at home life in the Hell’s Kitchen was full of hardships and struggles – the boys only had each other for supportThe author also writes “ Life without friends was harder Most kids were lucky enough to find one friend they could count on I found three All of them older probably wiser and no doubt smarter There is no memory of my early years that does not include them They were a part of every happy moment I enjoyed A very important character in the life of the boys was Father Bobby What a character he was Raised in the same neighbourhood himself he tried his level best to take care of the boys He introduced them to the world of books tried to keep them off the allure of easy money through crime The author has also given a pretty good description of Hell’s Kitchen “It was a place of innocence ruled by corruption” The inhabitants of Hell’s Kitchen were tough and often violent But they adhered to their own code of honour and justice The punishment for any violations was ruthlessLife was going on fine or rather as fine as boys in such a neighbourhood can be But a very stupid prank gone wrong would turn their world upside down They would be sent off to a correctional facility – the Wilkinson Home for Boys and fall victim to the sadistic and perverted guards there The boys were not members of any powerful gang and therefore vulnerable The guards did unspeakable things to these boys – I felt so much anger while reading about their brutality There were a few good men in the prison a guard who tried to help the boys a teacher who tried to make a difference But they were powerless to fight the systemThe boys left the correctional facility scarred for life John and Tommy took to a life of crime while the author and Michael left the neighbourhood and tried to live an honest life A chance encounter with one of the sadistic guards would set off a series of events Michael and Lorenzo would develop an elaborate plan to exact revenge not only on the guards but also on the facility itself Old friends from the neighbourhood would come forward to ensure justice for the boys The courtroom scenes were excellentThe guards got their just desserts and so did the facility The boys got justice but still barring the author none of them got a chance to lead a normal lifeThe author says that it is a true story Some people have raised doubts about the authenticity of the story It might be semi fictional I don’t know But I do know that crime against vulnerable children happens all over the world That’s why the story was so poignantThe story reminded me of Stephen King’s The Body The movie adaptation is Stand By Me It was another beautiful and tragic tale involving young boysIf you think you would like to give the book a try then please go ahead But as I have mentioned before parts of the book are really disturbing

  2. says:

    I read this once when I was younger and have not read it since I remember reading this shortly before the movie came out which I had only seen about once or twice itself and the events stayed with me ever since thenThe story was a harrowing one exploring the effects of how life can change in an incident with a minor mistake of childhood play After a childhood prank that ends in the death of a local vendor the four friends of the book are sentenced to a brutal juvenile prison where the prison guards abuse them in horrific ways This book is detailed as to the emotional physical and mental abuse the boys endure It's a memoir based on the author's own experiences I believe and although some 'authorities' have uestioned its truth but some of the most harrowing things in history have tried to be covered up and brushed aside But the truth lies in those who have lived such situations and a voice will be heard for those have suffered at the hands of such abuseThis book will always stay with me and I highly recommend this book

  3. says:

    Possibly the most disturbing book that I have ever read After I finished it I was fifteen I walked around my house in shock muttering oh my god over and over Originally I had picked it up out of a bookshelf without knowing what it was about so the subject matter was of a surprise than if I had known what to expect I actually feel somewhat horrible giving this five stars but it was an utterly engrossing and captivating book Honestly I wouldn't recommend this for most people I know but it is an amazing book

  4. says:

    Jar of Death Pick #36Reading Rush A book that inspired a movie you've already seenSleepers is a movie that I've never really heard anyone talk about I'm the only person I know who has seen it And the only reason I watched it was because Brad RenfroRIP was in it Ive discussed the huge crush I had growing up on Brad Renfro I've seen every movie he was ever in I feel like I need to rewatch the movie now because back when I originally watched when I was 16 I thought it was boring but after reading this book there is no way that the movie could be as boring as my teenage self thought Sleepers is the true story of the author's harrowing time spent in a juvenile detention centerprison for kids and the horrific abuse suffered there I could not put this book down It was taut exciting compelling and heartbreaking This book put my emotions through the ringer Now I am aware of the controversy surrounding this book It has been alleged that the author Lorenzo Carcaterra didn't experience these things but instead it was a friends story Nobody denies the story actually happened what is in dispute is who it happened to My thoughts on the matter are that it doesn't matter a lot to me if Lorenzo Carcaterrawith permission told some else's story because I think this story needed to be told and no one connected to it wanted to be identified Sleepers is a brutal story No child should ever have to experience the horrific abuse suffered by the people in this book Mr Carcaterra is a brilliant writer who told a gripping story of friendship loyalty betrayal courage and revenge I recommend Sleepers with all of my heart A Must Read

  5. says:

    It was the summer of '97 and I got grounded for sneaking out of my bedroom window again to meet up with friends to drink warm pilfered beers and smoke mexican ditch rat weed probablySo while I'm grounded I read this book and I can't put it own Because I read it so uickly I still have a week to kill with nothing to do So i read it again I had friends come over to try and get me to sneak out again but i blow em off and say 'nah im good actually got this book im reading' That's about all i can remember of this

  6. says:

    I read this book many years ago when I was in high school and I wanted to re read it to see how I felt about it this many years later It was still a very hard read The first part of the book describes the relationships and friendship between the four boys we get to know their personalities and characteristics and have some insight as to how each of them will cope in this hideous environment The boys end up in some mischief which has dire conseuences they are sent to a reform school where they will endure horrendous physical sexual and emotional abuse for the duration of their sentence Their innocence is destroyed and this will have terrible effects on each of them for the rest of their lives

  7. says:

    The book is very well written and graphic in its portrayal of violence and sex but I had a sneaking suspicion it may be mostly fiction even while I was reading it years ago A uick search on the net now convinces me that there is a huge controversy regarding the veracity of the storyIf it's a true story it rates five starsIf it's fiction paraded as truth it rates only one starSince there is no way of establishing the truth I plumb for three stars

  8. says:

    The kind of book where you don't really want to say you enjoyed it given the subject matter and the fact that it's nonfiction although I've read some dissenting views regarding that but on that later but it was definitely captivating And during the part of the book set at the Wilkinson School for Boys a nice way of saying juvenile detention center or reform school there were times when I felt anxious and dreaded the next few pages I don't think a book has ever done that to me before We meet Lorenzo “Shakes” and his three best friends when they are all around 11 14 years old if I'm remembering correctly The author tells us how the four became fast friends while living in Hell's Kitchen and takes us through a lot of their escapades up until the fateful practical joke that lands a passerby in the hospital Up until then it's almost a warm amusing memoir of schoolboy antics But it definitely takes a very dark turn when the four boys are sent to Wilkinson From there we follow the boys as they are abused by the guards physically emotionally and sexually Those are some of the scenes that gutted me and were hard to read at times Once the boys are released we jump into the future and follow the boys now men as two of them kill one of the former guards and the other two devise an elaborate plan to tilt the trial in their favor and convince a jury to find the killers not guilty I understand the deep friendship that led to this but considering the two who killed the guards have killed others before that and probably went on to kill others after thatwell it's a shaky moral line to be straddling Usually after I read a book that's also a movie I like to watch the movie This one I'm not so sure I want to see these events played out in front of me Although Brad Pitt and Jeffrey Donovan Shakes grows up to become a journalist and his writing is superb with the words flowing across the page He has uite a few other books in his backlist fiction and nonfiction and I plan to keep an eye out for them After the book's release there was a lot of debate about whether or not it was in fact a true story with naysayers claiming there was no record of any court casetrial like the one in the book True or not the book is worth reading You can find a New York Times article here

  9. says:

    The author Lorenzo Carcaterra in his book Sleepers tells the story as himself reflecting back to when he was a boy growing up in Hell's Kitchen a city in New York in the 1960's and a place he and his three other friends were forced to go to after pulling a stupid prank that almost kills someone This place is a juvenille facility that they soon find out will change their lives forever There they endure unnecessary verbal physical and sexual abuse from the guards that watch themLater as adults two of the friends decide to get revenge when they see one of the guards in a bar This leads to a big trial but the friends feel like they can finally have complete revenge and expose the guardsThere is not a negative thing to be said about this book It definitely amounts to The Count of Monte Criso in the way of revenge The way Carcaterra decribes everythingespecially his life in Hell's Kitchen you really get a sense of what he's like and everything relates to his character as a boy It's not artificial sounding emotional and you feel like you just jump into his world and life; reliving it Everything was tied together well and was never boring I read it in like two days because every chapter was left off perfectly but you couldn't help reading the next few pages and the next not to sound cliche but a total page turnerLorenzo Carcaterra Sleepers

  10. says:

    I've heard that there is some doubt about the truth behind this story which has made the claim to be entirely true I read this book long before those doubts were raised and then again after I heard about them and my opinion of the book did not change at allIt would be better if the story was true as Carcaterra presents it but it does have a slight element of yeah sure that the reader has to work through especially at the endBut true or not it's a great story The friendship of the four small boys and token girl from Hell's Kitchen and especially the history of how they met was charming I liked the history that Carcaterra gave to their group and the background as to each member's personalitiesTheir time in the Home for Boys made my stomach hurt If those events actually did happen from the beatings to the torture to the rapes and unimaginable humiliation then I sit amazed at how two of the four grew up with their sanity intactAnd that's where I started to read the story with a uestion in my hearteven before the doubts were raised It all seemed to come together so easily for them Once they had an idea of what they wanted to do and how they could accomplish it everything just fell into place I don't know how realistic that is but it made for a great ending and had me cheering for the boys even as I knew that what they were doing was far from legal