China Blues by Ki Longfellow

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Good writing, good action, good humor--in all, good fun.


The Roaring Twenties, Chinatown, San Francisoco: back-street blues and bathtub gin...hardball mobsters and hardheaded cops...seductive speakeasies and sizzling scandals. As young Louis Armstrong blows his horn in the infamous Blue Canary, impetuous Nob Hill socialite Elizabeth Stafford Hamilton plunges into a reckless affair with mysterious Li Kwan Won. Unknown to Lizzie, Li is the overlord of the city's vast bootlegging empire—and arch-enemy of her powerful husband, the San Franciso district attorney. Suddenly Lizzie's privileged, upper-crust life is shadowed by danger and intrigue—as she's trapped between her lover and her husband while they battle for control of the city.

From Chinatown's dark underworld to high society's glittering ballrooms, from garish bawdy houses to the corridors of power, China Blues weaves an unforgettable tapestry of a dazzling age in the city of dreams, when nothing seemed forbidden—and every pleasure was a sin...

"Offbeat, unruly characters and vibrant atmosphere spill over the pages of this promising first novel set in San Francisco during Prohibition... Bootlegging, the Tong Wars, smoky speakeasies, inept mobsters, and the Teapot Dome scandal zigzag through these pages like streaks of lightning. The Jazz Era leaps to life."—Publishers Weekly

About Ki Longfellow

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Born on Staten Island, New York, to a French-Irish mother and an Iroquois father, Ki Longfellow grew up in Hawaii and Marin County, California, but ended up living in France and England for many years. She is the widow of a British national treasure, Vivian Stanshall, who dreamed her name was Ki. As Ki Longfellow-Stanshall, she created and sailed the Thekla, a 180 foot Baltic Trader, to Bristol, England where it became the Old Profanity Showboat. It remains there today as a Bristol landmark. On it, she and Vivian wrote and staged a unique musical for the sheer joy of it. "Stinkfoot, a Comic Opera," garnered a host of delighted, if slightly puzzled, national reviews. Her first book, "China Blues," now republished, was the subject of a bidding war. "China Blues," and her second novel, "Chasing Women," introduced Longfellow to Hollywood...a long hard, but ultimately fascinating, trip. When Vivian died, Ki stopped writing. Living on Standing Room Only Farm in Vermont, time did not heal, but it tempered. Eventually Ki began writing again. She chose to explore the figure of Mary Magdalene in her novel "The Secret Magdalene." Nancy Savoca, a brilliant independent film maker (winner of the Sundance Grand Jury Prize with her first film, "True Love") traveled all the way to Vermont to option the book as her next film. Ki's second book about personal divinity is "Flow Down Like Silver," a novel about the numinous and gifted Hypatia of Alexandria, a tragically ignored woman of towering intellect who searched through that intellect for what Mary Magdalene knew in her heart. "Houdini Heart," Longfellow’s first book of psychological horror is a stunning departure from her usual work. "Houdini Heart" has been favorably compared to the works of Shirley Jackson and H.P. Lovecraft.
Published March 5, 2012 by Eio Books. 458 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, History. Fiction
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on Jun 23 1989

Good writing, good action, good humor--in all, good fun.

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