Patry Francis' second work follows the lives of three individuals bound together by a tragedy in their childhood.
"The Orphans of Race Point" (Harper Perennial Paperback/HarperCollins, 524 pages) is the story Gus Silva, Hallie Costa and Neil Gallagher.
On one horrible night, Gus Silva witnessed his abusive father kill his mother in a jealous rage fueled by drunkenness. The incident leaves the nine-year-old temporarily catatonic.
With time and the gentle ministrations of his friend, Hallie, Gus slowly begins to heal his wounded psyche.
Years later, when three friends are at their high school prom, the violence of the past returns when Gus and Neil begin a fight fueled by alcohol and jealousy.
While Gus escapes punishment for savagely beating Neil, he turns to religion to expiate his sins and enters the priesthood.
In addition to his priestly vows, Gus recalls his promise never to let another woman be beaten by her husband - a promise which threatens to destroy him as he cannot escape his violent past.
This story of the orphans is, in part, a story of reconciliation with one's troubled past and a reminder that one's real family are those who stand by you through thick and thin.