Thunder City (Detroit Crime Series #7)by Loren D. Estleman
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.
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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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.