"Because life is funny", Gingerbread tells Keisha when she asks why he laughs so much. The thing is, until she falls in love with him, Keisha doesn't see what's funny -- in her life or anyone else's in Brooklyn. In this novel, the lives of eleven teenagers intertwine, sometimes by accident, sometimes because of something more. There is Eric, fiercely protective of his little brother, Mickey. To the rest of the world he's just plain fierce. To Linnette, he is only an intruder in her life -- until a look through a keyhole reveals both Eric's past and his future. Then there are Grace and Sam, whose dreams come true because they were lucky enough to be born beautiful. And Sonia, who struggles to live the life of a good Muslim girl in a foreign America. China and Ebony, whose friendship can't bear the changes that time brings. And Monique and Molly -- sisters -- each saved by the other. There is a lot more to teenagers' lives than is found in books. Usually. This one is remarkable for the truth of its sound, the sharpness of its eyesight, the kindness of its heart.
Growing up in New York can be agonizing, humorous, and always a challenge for the teens who tell their stories.