Overland Park, Kansas (PressExposure) October 07, 2012 -- In his childhood neighborhood Danny Rorro, better known as Domino, faced challenges just like most teenage kids. He had gone to a catholic school and dealt with bullies and scary nuns. Now at a different school, a private school called Hamden Academy, the girl of his dreams for the most part doesn't see him in the light he would prefer. His past and all of his anxieties of being alone and friendless always seem to follow him and leave him feeling sorry for himself.
Time can heal all wounds. A perfect moment at the right time, Danny takes a chance. Instead of giving up he actually goes for it. His prize, Brenda Divine, she is that girl, the one. Finally, the door was opened and Danny walked bravely through it with no fear. He and Brenda, were becoming friends and maybe more. They made plans together and shared stories and secrets. Danny never wanted this to change or end. Not only that, he was becoming a guy all about sports and making friends.
Unfortunately, things do change. No matter what Danny does the bullies are everywhere. One night he'd come back to the dorm to discover his room had been violated by some unseen force. Friendships he thought were secure were starting to unravel from all the social pressures teens face. Between that and the school sports fanatics, Danny finds himself falling down the rabbit hole yet again. Home visits on school breaks weren't a relief but an extra stress. Danny thought he finally was getting it all together and keeping it that way. Could he hold on to these moments that meant so much to him or would his life fall apart? Could he continue to stand tall and be the guy he wanted to be? He just wanted to be a guy with friends, sports, a girl and a social life.
Cotto has created a recognizable story that any boy who is having the growing pains of being a teenager can relate too. Boy teens want to be popular, good at sports and most importantly, they want to have someone they cherish and that will cherish them. But like any teen, there are those obstacles that get in the way. Issues with parents, teachers and bullies are always the woven thread that creates the snags that pop up in life. Cotto has poured all the emotion of being a teen into this novel. It's not surprising that he is the winner of the Silver Medal in readers favorite for coming of age YA.