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Saint Mudd: A Novel of Gangsters and Saints
     

Saint Mudd: A Novel of Gangsters and Saints

by Steve Thayer
 

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A classic gangster novel. Saint Mudd is the haunting story of a dying columnist for a dying newspaper in city wallowing in the Great Depression. St. Paul during the 1930s is home to gangsters like John Dillinger, Baby Face Nelson, and Ma Barker's boys thriving on a booming economy of prostitution, kidnapping, and robbery. Grover Mudd, the city's premier reporter,

Overview

A classic gangster novel. Saint Mudd is the haunting story of a dying columnist for a dying newspaper in city wallowing in the Great Depression. St. Paul during the 1930s is home to gangsters like John Dillinger, Baby Face Nelson, and Ma Barker's boys thriving on a booming economy of prostitution, kidnapping, and robbery. Grover Mudd, the city's premier reporter, wants nothing more than to put them away forever. But in a city that has the best politicians and police money can buy, Mudd suspects his efforts will lead to a big fat zero. But even a seasoned pro like Grover Mudd, who is certainly no saint, can't get used to all the dead bodies. With the reluctant help of the FBI, and the conflicted loyalty of a beautiful blond, Mudd targets the sociopathic killers with his own brand of terror. It is a high-stakes, high-risk gamble for the soul of a city, and the odds keep piling up—until Mudd finds out what unimaginable horrors human beings are capable of—including himself. Grover Mudd could end up a saint—or maybe a corpse. Visit: www.stevethayer.com

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Enriched since `wealth' follows by a wealth of historic detail and some evocative writing, this first novel (Thayer self-published an earlier version in 1986) brings to life the uncommon setting of '30s St. Paul, Minn., a safe haven for pimps, gamblers, bootleggers, dope smugglers and bloodthirsty gangsters of every stripe. In his popular column in the financially crumbling St. Paul Frontier News , protagonist Grover Mudd assails his city's cops, politicians and criminals--all of the forces that have brought on its moral decay. Characterized by cynical honesty and truculent wit, ``Grover's Corner'' alternately elicits anger, respect and amusement from the local citizenry. With the paper on its last legs, Grover and his editor, Walt Howard, mount a front-page campaign against the city's hospitality to criminals and the bloodshed in its streets. Meanwhile, the Feds come to town on the trail of some infamous crooks, among them Baby Face Nelson, Alvin Karpis, John Dillinger, Ma Barker's boys and the principal local villain, Dag Rankin. Lacking the distinctive narrative voice of the best crime fiction and with sex scenes seemingly grafted onto the story, Thayer's novel succeeds best as the story of St. Paul and of Grover Mudd. A contemporary of F. Scott Fitzgerald, in failing health as the result of wartime mustard gas, divorced and in love with a black hotel maid, an occasional opium user working for a dying paper in a decadent town, Mudd holds the reader's interest from start to finish. (June)
Library Journal
This raw, gritty first novel hews fairly closely to the hard-boiled detective tradition, with the twist that protagonist Grover Mudd is a newspaper columnist. The journeyman journalist covers early-Thirties St. Paul, Minnesota, one of the most crime-riddled cities in the country. Against a backdrop of bank robberies, prostitution, drug deals, and money laundering, Mudd uses his columns to alert citizens to the corruption that enfolds St. Paul at all levels. Plenty of violence and some very explicit descriptions of sexual encounters will put off the squeamish, but Saint Mudd tells a realistic tale of how those courageous enough to fight back can ultimately defeat the criminal element dominating a city.--Patricia Altner, Dept. of Defense Lib., Bolling Air Force Base, Washington, D.C.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780878393138
Publisher:
North Star Press of Saint Cloud
Publication date:
05/01/2009
Pages:
284
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

What People are Saying About This

Robert Lacey
Sex,drugs, shoot-outs, and corruptions: all the roughness and toughness of the best gangster fiction -- with a bittersweet ending in the final solution.

Meet the Author

Steve Thayer is the New York Times best-selling author of The Weatherman, Silent Snow, and The Wheat Field, as well as five other novels. He lives in his hometown of St. Paul, Minnesota. To learn more visit his web site at www.stevethayer.com.

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