The Wicked City by Beatriz Williams
A Novel

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Some of Atkins' attempts to inject period-specific trappings into his setting are heavy-handed, but even during the story's melodramatic heights, he maintains a level of realism that keeps the story from edging into camp.
-AV Club

Synopsis

New York Times bestselling author Beatriz Williams recreates the New York City of A Certain Age in this deliciously spicy adventure that mixes past and present and centers on a Jazz Age love triangle involving a rugged Prohibition agent, a saucy redheaded flapper, and a debonair Princetonian from a wealthy family.

When she discovers her husband cheating, Ella Hawthorne impulsively moves out of their SoHo loft and into a small apartment in an old Greenwich Village building. Her surprisingly attractive new neighbor, Hector, warns her to stay out of the basement at night. Tenants have reported strange noises after midnight—laughter, clinking glasses, jazz piano—even though the space has been empty for decades. Back in the Roaring Twenties, the place hid a speakeasy.

In 1924, Geneva "Gin" Kelly, a smart-mouthed flapper from the hills of western Maryland, is a regular at this Village hideaway known as the Christopher Club. Caught up in a raid, Gin becomes entangled with Prohibition enforcement agent Oliver Anson, who persuades her to help him catch her stepfather Duke Kelly, one of Appalachia’s most notorious bootleggers.

Headstrong and independent, Gin is no weak-kneed fool. So how can she be falling in love with the taciturn, straight-arrow Revenue agent when she’s got Princeton boy Billy Marshall, the dashing son of society doyenne Theresa Marshall, begging to make an honest woman of her? While anything goes in the Roaring Twenties, Gin’s adventures will shake proper Manhattan society to its foundations, exposing secrets that shock even this free-spirited redhead—secrets that will echo from Park Avenue to the hollers of her Southern hometown.

As Ella discovers more about the basement speakeasy, she becomes inspired by the spirit of her exuberant predecessor, and decides to live with abandon in the wicked city too. . . .

 

About Beatriz Williams

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BEATRIZ WILLIAMS lives with her husband and children in Greenwich, Connecticut. Overseas is her first novel.
 
Published January 17, 2017 by William Morrow. 384 pages
Genres: History, Romance, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Wicked City
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AV Club

Above average
Reviewed by Zack Handlen on May 18 2017

Some of Atkins' attempts to inject period-specific trappings into his setting are heavy-handed, but even during the story's melodramatic heights, he maintains a level of realism that keeps the story from edging into camp.

Read Full Review of The Wicked City: A Novel | See more reviews from AV Club

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73%

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