Thursday, March 20, 2008

Streets of Fire-Troy Soos

Streets of Fire
Troy Soos
Kensington, May 2008, $6.99
ISBN: 9780758206251

In 1895 the third biggest city in America, Brooklyn is about to join New York and become one metropolis. Harper Weekly reporter Marshall Webb weakened the Tammany hall organization with his exposé articles, but he feels stale and wants to quit. His boss convinces Marshall to work one freelance while taking time to write novels. He needs Marshall to cover the pending strike between the Brooklyn Railroad and its workers who demand safer working conditions and more money.

A strike is called with most people sympathizing with the employees until someone kills a cop. Most people assume a srriker murdered the polcie officer, but the victim’s superior Buck Morehouse thinks otherwise. The mayor, who owns stock in the railroad, calls in the militia to kill anyoe acting sucpious and does not care about collateral damage like the murder of a cop.

Marcus’ girlfriend Rebecca Davies, who runs a women’s shelter, is helping ex prostitute Vivian O’Connor set up a shelter targeting women wanting to get out of her former line of work. She calls it Sayre House after a girl she considered a friend was beaten to death. Several weeks later, O’Connor is killed; Rebecca, Marshall and Buck believe the homicides are linked, but they need to discover how.

Troy Soos provides a great atmospheric historical novel that gives readers a picture of the corruption in the police department and by local politicans during the Gay Nineties. The common person takes for granted that the powerful will abuse their positions as that is the accepted cost of being “protected” (sounds like politicans have not changed in over a century). The three prime protaognists of STREETS OF FIRE are fully developed and believable as they walk on the wild side of the streets of Manhatten and Brooklyn.

Harriet Klausner

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