A Rhumba in Waltz Time

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Depression-era Hollywood forms the backdrop for this sharp-edged noir from Levinson (The Traitor in Us All). In 1933, Chris Blanchard's career as an LAPD detective comes to an abrupt end after he refuses to look the other way when his colleagues victimize a prostitute. Five years later, Blanchard undertakes "special problems" for the MGM studio. One such problem involves actress Marie MacDaniels, who comes to his apartment drunk late one night, distraught over having shot her actor husband, Day Covington, and hands over the murder weapon. When Blanchard visits the scene of the crime, he quickly finds evidence clearing MacDaniels and sends her into hiding while he looks into the matter. That crime proves to be but the tip of a very violent iceberg. Photographer to the stars Otto Rothman also ends up dead, and mobster Bugsy Siegel and some American Nazi sympathizers appear to be behind some of the untimely deaths. Blanchard, a character Chandler would recognize, deserves a series of his own. (Aug.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781432824976
  • Publisher: Gale Cengage Learning
  • Publication date: 8/17/2011
  • Pages: 350
  • Sales rank: 1,163,925
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 1.10 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 6, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    a superb Depression Era Hollywood Noir

    In 1933, LAPD detective Chris Blanchard watches the demise of his police career when he refuses to ignore a peer roughing a prostitute. Forced off the force because he violated the unwritten rule, Blanchard obtains work at the MGM studio. He fixes problems.

    In 1938 actress Marie MacDaniels arrives at Blanchard's home drunk and distraught. She claims she shot and killed her spouse, actor Day Covington. She gives her gun to Blanchard. He arrives at the crime scene and finds proof she never shot her husband. While seeking to expedite her from the mess, he hides MacDaniels in a safe place. Soon afterward other homicides occur including Otto Rothman the photographer. Clues lead to Bugsy Siegel and American Nazis.

    A Rhumba in Waltz Time is a superb Depression Era Hollywood Noir. Blanchard is a tough protagonist who does not take prisoners as he investigates the Day murder and soon other homicides as an extension of his troubleshooting work for MGM. Readers will enjoy this 1930s thriller as the MGM major and minor leagues star system comes across in living color (even if the movies were mostly black and white).

    Harriet Klausner

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