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The Wife, the Maid, and the Mistress: A Novel by [Lawhon, Ariel]
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The Wife, the Maid, and the Mistress: A Novel Kindle Edition

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Length: 322 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Audible Narration:
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Lawhon's disappointing debut novel reimagines the 1930 disappearance of justice Joseph Crater, an unsolved crime that fixates armchair detectives to this day. Set among the speakeasies and society soirees of Jazz Age Manhattan, the story also winds its way through the cramped tenements of the Lower East Side and goes behind the scenes of Broadway spectaculars. One August night, Joseph Crater leaves Club Abbey, a speakeasy owned by notorious gangster Owney Madden, and is never seen again. There are rumors of political corruption and shady connections with the criminal underworld, but the story centers on three women in his life—his wife, Stella; his mistress, showgirl Ritzi; and his maid, Maria. The three of them, all severely affected by his disappearance, must deal with the unexpected consequences, while trying to decide if there is a chance that he might still be alive. Stella hides in her Maine vacation home to avoid being harassed by police detectives and journalists. Ritzi shoulders a grueling life that is nothing like the glamorous starlet's existence that she dreamed of. Maria, whose husband is a detective assigned to the Crater case, works on starting a family while managing two jobs. These women do everything they can to protect themselves and their families from the malevolent men who let nothing stand in the way of them and their money. A fascinating story, but rendered colorless by its lack of momentum and stock characters. (Jan.)

From Booklist

In this tale of Jazz Age New York, Lawhon walks one of fiction’s trickiest tightropes, creating a novel that is both genuinely moving and full of pulpy fun. It’s 1930, and a corrupt judge has gone missing. Newly promoted police officer Jude Simon is assigned the case and hunts among the speakeasies, Broadway theaters, and wealthy apartments of New York, only to be blocked at every turn. He’s stymied in particular by the three women in the judge’s life: his jaded wife; his sly mistress; and worst of all, his frightened maid, who happens to be Simon’s wife. The women’s stories throw a harsh light on New York in the 1930s, when gangsters ruled the city and women were pawns in their games. The imagined events of the novel become even more poignant when the reader discovers that the story is based on the real-life disappearance of Joseph Crater and that most of the characters were real people, like the notorious madam Vivian Gordon and the vile gangster Owney Madden. It’s a great story, told with verve and feeling. --Lynn Weber

Product details

  • File Size: 4051 KB
  • Print Length: 322 pages
  • Publisher: Anchor (January 28, 2014)
  • Publication Date: January 28, 2014
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00EBRU0AS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #74,590 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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