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Cousin Vinny

His real name is Louis Anthony Agnello, but he goes by the pen name Cousin Vinny. Before settling in Florida, he was in the, um, entertainment business in New York. He managed strippers. He also stripped himself. He also worked as an actor on soap operas like Ryan's Hope, Guiding Light and One Life to Live. But after he was shot in the leg by a mugger in Sleepy Hollow, N.Y., he moved to Sun City Center and finished the novel The Devil's Glove, which he had started in 1992. He has several upcoming signings in Tampa Bay. They include: 7 p.m. Thursday, Inkwood Books, 216 S Armenia St., Tampa; 6 p.m. April 24, Barnes and Noble St. Petersburg, 2501 Tyrone Blvd.; and 2 p.m. April 26, Barnes and Noble Brandon Square, 122 Brandon Town Center.

What's on your nightstand?

The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton. The first time I read it I was 13. I've read it a half dozen times.

So the book has inspired you?

I was inspired by the following. I knew that The Devil's Glove could become as influential in parochial schools as the book The Outsiders was in the public school system. The characters in The Outsiders were from the wrong side of the tracks, and they felt persecuted and didn't feel like they belonged. In my book, Eddie doesn't feel like he belongs, but he creates his own ostracism over his obsession with the antique (baseball) glove he found.

Piper Castillo can be reached at or (727) 445-4163.