Thunder City by Loren D. Estleman | Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Thunder City (Detroit Crime Series #7)

Thunder City (Detroit Crime Series #7)

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by Loren D. Estleman
     
 

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Thunder City presents Detroit in the process of becoming the Motor City. Harlan Crownover, scion of a great family of carriage makers, battles with his father to invest in a company run by Henry Ford, who has failed twice before in the automobile business. Desperate for funds, Harlan turns to Big Jim Dolan, the Midwest's most powerful political boss, and Sal Borneo, a

Overview

Thunder City presents Detroit in the process of becoming the Motor City. Harlan Crownover, scion of a great family of carriage makers, battles with his father to invest in a company run by Henry Ford, who has failed twice before in the automobile business. Desperate for funds, Harlan turns to Big Jim Dolan, the Midwest's most powerful political boss, and Sal Borneo, a visionary mafioso struggling to bring the commerce of vice into the new century. Allies at first, they soon will be mortal enemies. At the crisis, only Edith Hampton Crownover, Harlan's troubled, aristocratic mother, will be in a position to shift the balance of power.

Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Fifth in the highly lauded series of Detroit novels that began with 1990's Whiskey River, a marvel of Prohibition-era description, and continued variously with Motown, King of the Corner, and, most recently, Edsel (1995). The story this time goes back to turn-of-the-century Detroit and Henry Ford's third attempt to make his automobile factory solvent. Almost no one thinks that Ford's horseless carriage will ever take off and pay for itself—no one but Harlan Crownover, widely seen as the slow-brained member of a family renowned for its business sense. Harlan's father, Abner Crownover II, had risen from grease boy in his own father's firm to youthful genius who turned the firm into one that built short-haul freight vehicles and passenger coaches. These were capped by the elegant Crownover opera coach, which rode on a superb suspension system invented by Abner II, subsequently patented, leased to all other coach makers, and insuring Abner II of millions of dollars for the rest of his life. Or as long as coaches are made—and now young Harlan is backing Henry Ford. Harlan goes to Big Jim Dolan, the city's street railway commissioner, for a $5,000 loan he plans to sink into Ford's ingenious new assembly-line factory. When Dolan turns him down, Harlan hits up the Sicilian Prince, rising protection-racket boss Sal Borneo. Aside from being a health faddist, Borneo, tied to Dolan, has his hand in the city government—and into Ford by way of Harlan? Will Ford solve his rear-axle problem by stealing Abner II's spring suspension system? Will Harlan eventually take over the factory and become the new Coach Prince? Will bloody Sal turn on Harlan? A tour de force of descriptive energy,researched to hair's-breadth accuracy of detail, and packed with characters vivid enough to make Frank Norris dance a jig with Theodore Dreiser. Estleman's final cut on this epic series should be a single chronological, chrome-plated volume of mirror-clear prose.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780783890302
Publisher:
Cengage Gale
Publication date:
05/28/2000
Series:
Detroit Crime Series, #7
Pages:
327
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.41(h) x 1.17(d)

Meet the Author

Loren D. Estleman was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and graduated from Eastern Michigan University with a BA degree in English Literature and Journalism in 1974. In 2002, the university awarded him an honorary doctorate in Humane Letters for his contribution to American literature.

He is the author of more than fifty novels in the categories of mystery, historical western, and mainstream, and has received four Western Writers of American Golden Spur Awards, three Western Heritage Awards, and three Shamus Awards. He has been nominated for the Edgar Allan Poe Award, Britain's Silver Dagger, the National Book Award, and the Pulitzer Prize. In 2003, the mammoth Encyclopedia of Detective Fiction named him the most critically acclaimed writer of U.S. detective

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Thunder City (Detroit Crime Series #7) 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Loren D. Estelman¿s Thunder City portrays a city of new beginnings and organized crime. Detroit is becoming a hotbed of automobile manufacturers and con men. Harlan Crownover emerges from the pack willing to jump into the automobile business and finance the mechanical genius Henry Ford. Harlan¿s father Abner, the wealthiest man in Detroit and many other powerful men fell that the automobile will ruin everything that they have worked so hard for. In his quest for financial backing, Harlan comes across Jim Dolan, the city¿s street railway commissioner who immediately turns him down. Next the relentless Crownover turns to the Sicilian Prince, Sal Borneo, a mafia boss who loves the idea of having young Harlan backed into a corner. Now the pressure rests on Ford to make an efficient, affordable vehicle. Could he overcome the pressure of Detroit¿s political scene? Or will he be crushed in his third attempt at the automobile industry? Loren Estleman¿s historical novel is a great look into the history of Detroit and the birth of the auto industry. It also delves into the first stages of organized crime, and Prohibition. While a good read, it is often difficult to follow and contains many unnecessary details that slow the progression of the story. At times the novel can be very suspenseful and riveting; but at other times, it can be very dull and uneventful. Estleman begins most chapters by setting the scenes with many lengthy, drawn out observations that eradicate the story¿s pace. For this reason I would recommend Thunder City to history lovers but not to those in search of an exciting quick read.