Dark Hearts of Chicago

in collaboration with the novelist William Horwood

“The razzmatazz of the [World’s] Fair is colourful, the feminist heroine attractive…the description of  nineteenth-century Chicago is atmospheric… an excellent if unexpected thriller.”

literary review

Dark Hearts of Chicago

When young, inexperienced but very ambitious female reporter Emily Strauss bluffs her way into newspaper magnate Joseph Pulitzer’s office, she comes away with a treacherous assignment: to find out what happened to Anna Zemeckis, one of many women who have disappeared during the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago. With the support of a young man who is just venturing into the burgeoning trade of news photography, Emily soon finds herself in a race against time to save Anna’s life and to bring her story back to New York before Pulitzer’s tough deadline expires.

19th century Chicago is a place of dangerous contrasts. Most obviously there is all the glitz and razzmatazz of the Fair itself and the spectacular wealth and influence of a new middle-class elite. But Emily must also come face-to-face with the rival ethnic groups, the sinister underworld of pornography and prostitution, as well as the ruthless meatpacking giants of the Union Stock Yard who control the lives and destinies of so many of Chicago’s immigrant poor.

For Helen’s article on the inspiration behind this novel see the article The Pioneer Women Journalists who Inspired a Novel at the bottom of this page

Reviews

The short chapters and tight plot invoke a cold dread in the reader from the very beginning.

Daily Telegraph

 

With a strong plot and a vividly-created picture of the era, there’s more than a whiff of Gang’s of New York…and you know how good that was.

Daily Sport

 

Combining the pace and excitement of a Dan Brown book, with exhaustive research that takes you deep into the bold, corrupt world of Chicago, this is a big doorstep of a treat.

Good Book Guide

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