Gloria White. Cry Baby (2006) 224 pp.
Publisher’s description: “After a fifteen-year absence, Ronnie Ventana’s high school friend, Analisa Bugatti, turns up in San Francisco with a couple of babies in tow. During lunch at a Chinatown restaurant, Analisa vanishes, leaving Ronnie with the two kids. Is Analisa in trouble, or simply criminally irresponsible? Rather than plunge the children into the bureaucratic quagmire of Child Protective Services, Ronnie gives her friend the benefit of the doubt and temporarily stashes the kids with a grumbling Blackie Coogan while she sets out to find her friend. What she uncovers is a web of lies and failed loyalties, where the babies are the currency and not the only losers in a high stakes game of greed and need.”