Hidden City

Hidden City

by Jim DeBrosse
     
 

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Cincinnati Eagle reporter Rick Decker can remember the days when his newspaper chased after real stories and not-to cite his latest assignment-gossip about the Hollywood starlet in town. His frustration at work hasn't helped his faltering relationship with Dr. Janet Shoemaker, a resident at the local teaching hospital.

But then Decker gets a hot tip from Janet that

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Overview

Cincinnati Eagle reporter Rick Decker can remember the days when his newspaper chased after real stories and not-to cite his latest assignment-gossip about the Hollywood starlet in town. His frustration at work hasn't helped his faltering relationship with Dr. Janet Shoemaker, a resident at the local teaching hospital.

But then Decker gets a hot tip from Janet that someone in Cincinnati has died of bubonic plague-known as the Black Death in the Middle Ages-and his career and love life take off in surprising, and dangerous, new directions.

The first victim of what threatens to be an epidemic is a Navaho elder who had come all the way from Arizona in answer to a cryptic letter for help from someone named Little Bear. The next to succumb is the Glad Man, a homeless man who wore garbage bags around his body.

With the help (and increasing attentions) of Angie Lapola, a cub reporter with a punked-out wardrobe, Decker's investigation leads to a baffling network of abandoned subway and bootlegging tunnels below the city's historic Over-the-Rhine Brewery District.

The rats there are poised to spread the disease, placing the city on high alert. But Decker discovers that not all the rats are underground. The human variety can be found in the city's politics.

Jim DeBrosse leads Decker through a dual labyrinth of tunnels and criminal connections, where the final encounter is with the horror of plague itself, in what Publishers Weekly called his latest "well-plotted whodunit in the Raymond Chandler-Ross Macdonald tradition."

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In the second outing of likable reporter Rick Decker (last seen in The Serpentine Wall ), Cincinnati, Ohio, seems about to fall prey to a deadly epidemic. When an Arizone Indian dies of bubonic plague outside a shelter for the homeless, a former brewery soon to be the site of a $600-million redevelopment project, the city fathers are understandably dismayed. But Decker finds out that the victim had not actually entered the shelter before his death, and he and sidekick Angie Lapola suspect that the men behind the redevelopment scheme may be creating the epidemic scare. It turns out that the health commissioner owns properties in the blighted redevelopment area, but he seems genuinely determined to thwart the spread of the plague, even as more homeless people die of the disease along the rat-infested riverfront. Then Decker learns that the first victim had actually died in an abandoned subway tunnel, and his body secretly moved to the shelter. Hoping to prove that there is a sewer line tying the tunnels to the former brewery, Decker takes a daunting hike into the gloomy underworld, where a very unpleasant surprise lies in wait. DeBrosse's portrait of newsroom life is dead-on, and his characters are depicted with humanity and humor. (Nov.)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780312063689
Publisher:
St. Martin's Press
Publication date:
10/01/1991
Series:
Rick Decker Series
Edition description:
1st ed
Pages:
304

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