A Shocking Novel of Teen-Age Gang Life in the Slums of Manhattan
BANTAM BOOKS 945
FIRST PRINTING OCTOBER 1951
NEW YORK, USA
A GRAVE CHALLENGE
"IN HIS NEW NOVEL, Hal Ellson rips aside the words 'juvenile delinquency' and shows the full extent of the horror and tragedy beneath.
"Far more graphic than court records or newspaper reports, his shocking picture of the operation of teen-age gangs exposes one of the major social problems of our large cities. Mr. Ellson's aim is not only to describe the deplorable practices of groups of so-called hoodlums, but to point directly to two of the chief causes of their delinquency: first, always, their appalling home life; second, the maelstrom outside in which they are set adrift-an environment compounded of crime, violence, poverty, insecurity and fear.
"Some readers may feel that the author could have presented his case more persuasively by replacing some of the sensationalism with constructive scenes, but Mr. Ellson seems deliberately to have avoided this method. He takes the whole shocking and brutal story and flings it down as a challenge. There can be no argument, at any rate, as to whom it may concern. It concerns us all."
-reprinted from the CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR