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Lessons of the Heart


Charlie is fed up with his old man's midnight intrusions and drunken bouts.  At 15, it's hardly his job to be the parent, much less having to financially fend for himself and his younger brother.  Had it not been for Penny, the girl he has loved since age 12, he might have turned to the bottle himself.

       Just when things are starting to look up, his lawn mowing business is thriving, he's that much closer to buying a car, grades are good, and he and Penny are tighter than ever, his father sobers up.  Why?  Her name is Zelda.  The shapely buxom redhead slithers her way into Edward's heart, eager to be a wife, not necessarily a mother.  After her mind-blowing attack on Charlie, and her ridiculous ultimatum to their father, the boys find themselves packed and shuttled off to a group home across the State.  But not before Charlie stumbles upon a scrapbook in the attic, with proof of a huge family secret that is directly related to him.  Feeling lost and betrayed, and with no one to rely on but each other, Charlie is stunned with the news of Penny's first letter.  From group home to foster homes, Charlie comes to realize he has a lot to learn about life, and why people are the way they are.

       "Lessons of the Heart," set in the 1970s, illustrates the bond between brothers, whose family is torn apart by tragedy.  It depicts the realities of life, of human frailties and injustices.  It is a story about love and hatred, joy and pain, loyalty and betrayal, and through friendships, hope, and forgiveness, lies the answers to set us free.

A Testament of Love, Endurance, and Survival

What if you were stranded in a desolate, woodsy swamp, unable to walk, unable to hear, and then become blinded by the darkness of night?


Forty-seven-year-old Joe is perched on a tree-stand, in hopes of bagging his first deer of the season.  After hours of waiting, he's about to descend when disaster strikes—his stand collapses beneath him, landing him twenty feet below.  A hideous injury causes bouts of unconsciousness, and with no way of calling for help, he is consumed with regrets of having told no one of his plans that day.  As nighttime draws near, with only three bullets for protection, he fears most of dying alone in these woods.  To stand any chance of survival, Joe begins to crawl his way out, but barriers get in the way, the cold sets in, he has no water to stay hydrated, and there’s the dangerous wildlife.


       Out of Darkness, A Testament of Love, Endurance, and Survival not only illustrates a catastrophic situation, but also the life-long trials of deaf Joe Barone.

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