When spunky seventeen-year-old Janet Duffy’s dreams are dimmed by family neglect, she finds comfort in the Black community working for civil rights in NYC. After running away with a Black musician to become an artist, she experiences heartbreak, poverty and danger – and has to summon the courage to escape.
“It takes rare courage to be this vulnerable, honest, and authentic in a memoir. With heart wide open, Janet reveals herself as a girl whose path was driven by intellect, curiosity, and a quest for justice. The history she weaves into her personal story gives gravity to the book. A compelling story.” —Denise Keyes Page, Executive Director, Racial Justice and Empathy Facilitator at Ubuntu Storytellers.
“Conflicted and triumphant, Janet Luongo’s memoir will leave you a changed
person. Unafraid to dig beneath platitudes about racial justice, troubled teenagers,
artists at risk—this book speaks eloquently to dilemmas we have yet to resolve.
Each page is crafted with honesty and passion. Truthful details about the Sixties will
challenge young and not-so-young alike. Luongo’s book is like a masterful painting: it lingers in the mind’s eye and creates its own unique light.” —Vera Schwarcz, Professor of Chinese Studies at Wesleyan University, Guggenheim Fellowship recipient, and author Colors of Veracity and Bridge Across Broken Time: Chinese and Jewish Cultural Memory.
“What a year Janet had at age seventeen and eighteen! So much in her story engaged me – vivid wording, surprises in plot, compelling characters and push/pull relationships, her reflections on ‘who am I?’ and confronting her heritage and history. So young, she took responsibility in sexual experiences, saw humor in awful situations that later turned sour but left her wiser.” – Jamie Forbes, former Director of Family Faith Formation at the Unitarian Church in Westport, CT.
“Now is the best time for this memoir to come out. Janet has an important message to deliver.” Sonja Ahuja, Capacity Building and Training Partner, Co-Creating Effective and Inclusive Organizations (CEIO)