JOSHUA AND THE CITY by Joseph F. Girzone


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 Having brought peace to the strife-torn Middle East in his last outing, Joshua and the Holy Land (1993), the mysterious Joshua returns to set his sights on an even more challenging task: reforming that Sodom-and-Gomorrah-on-the-Hudson--New York City. Joshua arrives, and as he walks up Broadway he encounters a young runaway named Charlene who has turned to prostitution. In the wink of an eye, he frees her from her pimp and convinces her that she should give up life on the streets and return to school. Continuing on with his new convert, Joshua enters Central Park, where he meets a woman who suffers from incipient Alzheimer's. One touch and she too is cured--and she agrees to adopt Charlene and send her to a suburban boarding school. Walking on alone, Joshua emerges on the far end of the park in Harlem. He plays basketball with a group of African-American youths who touch him with their good hearts and lack of hope. He begins teaching them the skills to start their own businesses, but, of course, it's not enough. Fortunately, the husband of the senility victim he healed is a wealthy developer, who out of gratitude now agrees to buy up and redevelop the entire neighborhood. Joshua's greatest miracle, though, is that in all this urban renewal no one is displaced. And so it goes: As the development project proceeds, Joshua roams about doing good, helping a mother's drug-addicted son, comforting a dying AIDS patient, battling the evil influences of the occult, fighting Satan in the guise of the mercurial Lucius Fabian, all the while spouting ever higher platitudes like a politician on a bad day. More blandly inspirational fare for Girzone's rather sizable readership.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1995
ISBN: 0-385-47420-2
Page count: 256pp
Publisher: Doubleday
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 1995


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