Lucia Pallacio meets Anthony Falco at Coney Island and it's love at first sight. Though her mobster father, Vincent Pallacio, forbids her to see Anthony and threatens to harm him, she disobeys. After learning she must marry her father's rival, she and Anthony run away. Her father's goons find them. They take her back to her father and leave Anthony for dead. Lucia attempts suicide, but is found by her mother. Forced to marry Carlo Guerriero, who treats her like a secondhand possession, Lucia becomes a prisoner in his Staten Island home and is expected to meet his every sexual desire. She begins to think about suicide again and this desire to die intensifies when she discovers she's pregnant. Only the baby is Anthony's. With the help of Carlo's housekeeper, Lucia fights to protect her baby and survive her life with Carlo as she learns the reason behind her strange arranged marriage.
Find out what happens when Romeo and Juliet meet the Godfather.
Customer Review

Jill N. Noble "Senior Editor/Co-Owner - NRP, LLC"
This review is from: The Promise (Kindle Edition)
Author Candace Gold has written an epic tale of star-crossed lovers who must overcome astronomical odds if they wish to be together.

The Promise started a little slow for my taste, to be honest with you, because I prefer a more intense, fast-paced plot. But once things get rolling, the story took me on a journey I'll not soon forget. I can still "see" these characters in my head, and I read this book several weeks ago, so that should tell you something. :-) The villain is nasty, but not a caricature, and you really do wonder if Lucia and Anthony are going to have their happily ever after. I thoroughly enjoyed The Promise, and I recommend this book for those who like longer, "second chances" stories with an "epic" feel.

Chapter One

My father always wanted to be a "wise guy." As a young boy, he read everything he could get his hands on about the Mafia.
He idolized men like Al Capone and Frank Nitti. When his friends pretended to be soldiers, he pretended to be Lucky Luciano.
Grandpa Joe tried everything in his power to dissuade him, knowing well the dangers of such an obsession. But even then, at
such a young age, nothing could deter my father once he'd set his mind to something.

By the time he was twelve, he was running small errands for the local Family. He practically lived at their hangout. Whenever
my grandfather found him hanging around there, he'd drag him home by the ear and beat him with a leather strap. "Siete asino
del cavallo," which translated roughly to something like "you're a horse's ass," he'd tell him, but it went in one ear and out
the other. This went on for the next two years, until my father experienced a growth spurt and surpassed my grandfather in
size. It was then that my grandfather knew he'd lost his son to the devil for good. My grandmother refused to give up on him,
though, and went to church each morning to pray to the Blessed Virgin for her son's immortal soul.

In time, my father ably proved his loyalty and worth to the Family. Being a full-blooded Italian, he was welcomed with opened
arms. His first important job, one he often accomplished with more than the necessary enthusiasm, was the collection of
protection money from the local storeowners. He eventually graduated to more important tasks, performing them well enough to
be noticed by some big shots in the Organization. From that point on, he steadily rose up the Mob's ladder of opportunity
without missing a rung.

My father met my mother at the local deli, which her parents owned. Coming over from Sicily, Salvatore and Bella Curcio had
saved every last dime to set up shop. My mother, Marie, and her older sister, Josephina, helped work the counter after school.
Although Marie had dreamed of becoming an actress, her parents didn't feel it was an appropriate occupation for a nice Italian
girl. They viewed Hollywood as a den of iniquity. All good Italian girls had one goal in life—to marry and raise children.
As for my parents, it was love at first sight. Amore a prima vista. The rest of the story would have been history, except for
one thing. My mother's parents disliked my father from the moment they first laid eyes on him and forbade their daughter to
see him. Mom was just as headstrong as my father was and disobeyed her parents whenever the opportunity arose. The more they
forbade her to see him, the more she wanted to be with him. Finally, as a last resort, Grandpa Sal decided to ship her off to
relatives living in Chicago until she got over her "craziness," which was how he referred to my father. When my mother found
out she was going to be sent away, she told my father. Did I mention he had a terrible temper?

One night, just before the deli closed, some of my father's friends paid a visit to my mother's father and brother. Making
them "an offer they couldn't refuse," they were able to persuade the old man to change his mind. By the next week, everyone
was planning a wedding. They married two months later, with some of the most influential men in the Mafia in attendance. Six
months later, I was born and given the name Lucia, after my mother's saintly grandmother.

As a child, I never actually knew what my father did. I would often see strange men coming and going to and from our house.
Then there were the times my father would be gone for weeks. My mother told me he was a private contractor who people hired to
put up buildings and houses. As a young woman, I still wasn't certain what he did. And, to tell the truth, I was glad. The
little I did know scared the hell out of me. I would have been happier had he been a firefighter or accountant like other

We lived in a beautiful brick house in the Red Hook section of Brooklyn. Inside looked like a page right out of House
Beautiful. My mother had filled every room with the finest of imported furniture and antiques. Decorating was my mother's
passion. I think my father indulged her, allowing her to buy whatever she desired for the house, because it kept her out of
his hair. I was forever hearing him ask at our dark, mahogany dinner table that could open to serve two families comfortably,
"How much did you spend today, Marie?"

My father conducted all his business dealings in his study, a small, oak-paneled room with a fireplace that reeked of cigar
and cigarette smoke when the door was opened. Sometimes, as I passed by, I heard strange voices. I often tried to picture the
faces that went with them. Never allowed to go inside, I dared trespass only once. Somehow, my father found out, and my bottom
was sore for a week. I never went inside the room uninvited again. Thus, I learned at an early age how painful it was to cross
my father. You never answered him with a no. His punishment, though swift, was often unjust, for he acted as both judge and

My birth turned out to be a great disappointment to him. I didn't realize how desperately he'd wanted a son until I witnessed
a terrible argument he and my mother had one night when I was five years old. His shouts were loud enough to wake me from a
sound sleep. I slipped out of bed and went to their bedroom to see what was going on. The door stood open, so I peeked inside.
I saw my father towering over my mother. She sat cowering on the floor, trying to make herself as small a target as possible,
as my father slapped her to emphasize each point he made. He called her names and shouted terrible words I soon learned not to
repeat. She'd failed him as a wife for no other reason than she'd only produced one child, a girl. Had it been a boy,
everything would have been okay. He'd wanted a son—needed a son. What good was a girl? Hadn't she known it had to be a boy?
What good was she to him?

Seeing the rage in my father's dark green eyes and the fear in my mother's, I knew I'd find no comfort in that room and ran
back to bed. I pulled the blanket over my head and cried myself to sleep. That was only the first of the many times I would
do so. Too bad my sobs couldn't drown out those terrible, hurtful things my father said. His words continued to echo in my
head over and over again. He hadn't wanted me; he didn't love me. I didn't understand why he didn't want me, but I promised
myself I'd be such a good girl that he'd have to love me.

As I got older, I realized being the daughter of Vincent Pallaccio had its drawbacks. The greatest one concerned my social
life. Only a handful of the guys at school would dare ask me out because they feared my father. I soon got the reputation of
being "untouchable." I had plenty of girlfriends, but they all dated while I stayed at home. A leper got more dates than me.
In my senior year, I was voted the prettiest girl in school. Yet what good did it do me? I didn't even have a date for the
prom. No one wanted to tangle with my old man. They were all afraid of him.

When I would try to talk to my father about it, he'd merely shrug it off saying, "What's your worry, Lucia, eh? When the time
comes, you'll be married."

I figured he knew something I didn't, and if some stranger from another town didn't show up to sweep me off my feet, I was
never going to walk down the aisle of a church dressed in white.

As for my mother, most of the fiery feistiness she'd once displayed was all gone by then. I was certain my father had a great
deal to do with it. Disagreeing with him was a dangerous thing to do. In our house, he always had the last word, giving new
meaning to being "the king of his castle." In essence, he was nothing more than a bully. If his vicious words were not enough
to reduce my mother to a sobbing mass, his fists eventually did. I hated him during those times. She tried to hide it from me
and the rest of the world, but I knew. Makeup couldn't always hide her bruises. Over the years, the arguments grew less in
 number, not because my father had mellowed, but because my mother had merely realized the futility of disagreeing. Then
 again, the pain was probably very convincing.