Jerry Izenberg

After the Fire

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From an award-winning author comes a historical novel of forbidden love in a time of social upheaval. 

Newark, 1968. Junior Friscella, Montclair State football star and Italian North Ward hero, has a bright future ahead of him. His family and friends adore him. He doesn't expect to be blindsided by Mickey Washington, a tough, smart black beauty from the wrong side of town-or to fall completely in love with her.

Mickey Washington, raised by a single mother in the Black Central Ward, works hard to contribute to her family, put herself through college, and make her mother proud. Italian golden boy Junior Friscella is the very last thing she needs. So why can't she stop thinking about him?

Still recovering from the 1967 riots, Newark seethes with racial tension, corrupt politics, and rival mob families jostling for influence-and is the wrong place and the wrong time for Junior and Mickey. When their relationship becomes public knowledge, neighbors turn on neighbors, family members refuse to accept them, and racially charged violence meets them at every turn. Junior takes a bullet for Mickey, and his family must decide whether to stand up against a city on the brink of riot or push him to break off the relationship.

Junior and Mickey believe their love is more powerful than the hate swirling around them. But can they ever find acceptance and peace in a world that wants to tear them apart?
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