Friday, August 17, 2012

Review: The Jazz Cage

Title - The Jazz Cage 
Author - Ray Chen Smith
Series or standalone - Standalone
Genre - Historical Fiction
Published - June 12th 2012
Goodreads & Amazon
Rating 5 out of 5


Prohibition-era mobsters collide with Underground Railroad abolitionists in The Jazz Cage.

It is 1924—sixty years after the South’s victory in the Civil War.

Frank McCluey, bounty hunter for the mob, is sent to help out a wealthy Virginian bootlegger. Frank’s job: track down two female slaves who’ve run away from the millionaire.

But the mob has made a bad choice. Instead of capturing the women, Frank decides to help them escape to Canada, his mission now aided by the pint-sized but steel-willed runaway Della and the outlawed Underground Railroad.

Soon Della and Frank become the target of slave catchers, cops, gangsters, and most chilling of all, a Confederate agent nicknamed the Hound for his ability to always sniff out and kill his prey. 


I received this book from the author in return for an honest review. The book is about Frank McCluey he's a almost retired mob bounty hunter. He get's sent down to Virginia to do a job for a millionaire Raymond Wills a old whiskey tycoon about a job. After spending the day with Wills he learns that two of his maids have run away, and he wants them returned unharmed. Frank set's out with his boss's nephew Issac who he helped raise when he was just a young teen. Issac and Frank track the women to Levi's Tubbs a man who works for the Underground Railroad and is helping them women get to Canada where they will be free. 

Della and Cece are maids for the old Wills, but this isn't their first time trying to get away. Wills has a sick obsession with Cece and had always been decent to Della. The girls flee trying to get away from the monster that has been controlling their lives since he purchased Cece and sent Della's mother to the butcher. After their contact is murdered the girls attempt to flee but get saved from the FSA by Frank and Issac. Neither of them wants to take the woman back to Wills, but Frank doesn't want Issac in the mess so he sends him home by trying him up and leaving him on the side of the road. 

However Frank isn't the only one after the women, Herbert Basset also known as the Hound a agent at the Fugitive Slave Agency is hot on the trail as the trio race to get away. Hound is one scary guy he wants to be in charge of the FSA and has no issues killing to get what he wants.  In addition to fleeing the FSA they are also running from the mob as well as Wills. The trio will need to be lucky to get away from everyone chasing them. 

I don't read a lot of Historical Fiction, but when I do they always seem to be really good. This one is no exception; it's a fast paced entertaining read that keeps you on the edge the whole time. I really liked Frank he's such a good guy even if he is a bounty hunter for the mob, he's still has a good heart. The book made me hate the hound it's been a while since I read a book just hoping someone would kill him but I did. I found the characters well developed my heart went out for Della and Cece, and I love reading a book that makes me feel all emotional. It's a great book, it kept me drawn in right from the start and I had a hard time putting it down, had to stay up till almost two last night reading just to finish. 

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