It's the winter of 1923 and the border towns are under a deep freeze, with ferries ice-bound in the Detroit River, snow burying the streets, and power interruptions. Prohibition is still the backdrop to daily life, but opium smuggling and human trafficking are a pair of disturbing additions to the mix.
2015 DEWEY DIVA PICK
In a failed attempt at transporting whisky across the Detroit River, a grim find is brought to the surface. When one of Detective Campbell's late-night walks is abruptly interrupted by a loud crash and a grisly thump, he summons his colleague Dr. Laforet to help with the case. Soon both cops and rumrunners are racing to connect the dots.
With a whisper of the occult in the chill Windsor air, Campbell and Laforet are caught up in another mystery.
Michael Januska was born in Windsor, Ontario. He has worked with books his whole life, both as a bookseller and for several book publishing companies. Stories from Januska's Prohibition-era Border City Blues series of novels and short stories have won two consecutive Scene of the Crime short story prizes. The previous Border City Blues book is Riverside Drive. He lives in Toronto.
This is an exciting, stylishly written piece of Prohibition-era historical crime fiction with an occult element and an array of memorable characters.
The book amply demonstrates that Riverside Drive was no fluke. Fans of the HBO series Boardwalk Empire need to check this one out right away.
The second in Michael Januska’s Border City Blues series is as slick as his debut.
...there’s enough character in McCloskey to lead to a second tale. This is a writer to watch.
[B]old and bewildering . . .