Two Nickels (Paperback)
Thirty-year-old Johnny Romano wants to be taken seriously, but the choices he makes-a one-man production of Waiting for Godot, a monumental sneeze in a cold syrup commercial, and a thirty-thousand-dollar gambling debt to Salvatore "Sally Toast" Tosterelli-have sabotaged his acting career. His bad decisions have, more importantly, put his four-and-a-half-year relationship with a woman he truly loves-soap opera star Laura Winters-on the edge of a cliff. Through a botched car theft, Johnny meets Virgil Shepherd, street person and sometime porter for a bar on Hudson Street in Greenwich Village. Scribbling his poems on napkins from Dunkin Donuts, Virgil is convinced that he is the Roman poet who guided Dante through Hell. Johnny is convinced that he is crazy. But as their lives converge, Johnny begins to suspect that the mysterious Virgil may actually have an agenda of his own. Set ten days before Christmas in 1997, Two Nickels follows this very unlikely pair through Manhattan (and a few choice spots on Staten Island) as they head toward the answer to a question that Johnny has done his best to avoid: What does it take for us to forgive ourselves and begin to heal?