Beatriz Williams' novel The Wicked City is historical fiction that also includes a bit of crime, a bit of romance and even a bit of the supernatural. When forensic accountant Elle discovers that her husband has been cheating on her, she moves into an apartment building with a rich past. Through the music that can be heard through the walls, we learn that the apartment used to house a speakeasy during the time of prohibition. Ginger is the bar's best customer. She is originally from the Appalachian mountains in Maryland where her abusive step-father is a wealthy moon-runnner. While she is okay with drinking the gin (also Ginger's nickname) that may have been brought into Manhattan by her step-father and his associates, she agrees to help law enforcement catch him.
The voices of the characters are completely unique. When I read the first-person account of Ginger, I was immediately reminded of the kind of choppy speaking style that is featured in movies set during the era of prohibition. It was interesting, and sometimes funny, to hear the interesting way in which the characters would speak to each other. Ginger is very dynamic and free in her personality.
The story could be, at times, slow but the story was an interesting one with a little bit of everything to suit any kind of reader. The era of prohibition as a setting was intriguing. I enjoy historical fiction but I rarely read, or come across, novels set in that era. I am interested in learning more about that time period.
The Wicked City is very unique and I easily became absorbed in the story line. Williams has a wonderful writing style and I look forward to discovering more of her novels in the future. Even if you are not a fan of historical fiction, don't shy away from this book. If you are interested in crime, romance or even ghost stories, I believe that you will like this book.
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