DARKNESS AND THE DEVIL BEHIND ME: A LANIE PRICE MYSTERY

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9780979253829: DARKNESS AND THE DEVIL BEHIND ME: A LANIE PRICE MYSTERY
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In December 1923, Esther Todd was a lovely young pianist, a rising star. One month later, she was on the Most Wanted List. She had vanished along the snowy streets of a stormy night in Harlem and thieves had hit the home of her society patron, pulling off a million- dollar heist. Were the disappearance and the robbery coincidence or conspiracy? Somebody knew, but nobody was talking. Three years later, the puzzles remained unsolved. As a crime reporter, Lanie Price covered the initial case. Now a frustrated society columnist, she's ready for a change. It comes in the form of Esther's sister, Ruth. Desperate for closure, Ruth begs Lanie to dedicate her Christmas column to the case. Maybe someone, somewhere will remember something. Seeking fresh material, Lanie starts asking hard questions, dangerous questions, the kind just about guaranteed to get her killed.

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From the Author:

This book introduces Lanie Price, a compassionate, but relentless news reporter, who worked in Harlem during the 1920s. This was a glamorous era, a time of ermine and diamonds and jazz and gimlets; a time when white society and black artists entered into partnerships. Lanie, an affluent woman in her own right, covers the good and the bad and the sometimes ugly happenings in Harlem society.

On a dark night in December, she finds herself covering the very worst -- the disappearance of Esther, a well-loved and up-and-coming young pianist, a woman who had everything to live for. This will turn into what we call a cold case. No answers are found and Esther's family grieves for three long years. Then her sister asks Lanie to revisit the case. It's a request she reluctantly accepts, but once she gets started, she can't stop.
Lanie was inspired by my mother's compassion, her resoluteness and her glamor. Unlike my mother, of course, Lanie married a wealthy surgeon. But like her, Lanie started out poor and worked her way up.

Lanie has known personal loss as well: the early death of her husband, Hamp, the only man she had ever loved.
That is, until Sam Delaney walked into her life. As her editor at the news room, Sam tries his best to protect Lanie from her own investigatory instincts. Meanwhile, he took has a past, a mysterious and perhaps dark past, about which she would some day like to know.
I love Lanie and Sam. I enjoyed spending time with them and hope you will, too. I also hope you'll enjoy going along for the ride as Lanie digs deep, and then deeper, to reveal the fate of that young woman who disappeared so quickly, so completely, on that night so long ago.
--Persia

About the Author:

Persia Walker is also the author of Black Orchid Blues and the award-winning  Harlem Redux, which the Boston Globe called "a full, vibrant portrait of that storied era when Harlem's pulse was the rhythm of black America." She was also a contributor to the anthology The Blue Religion - New Stories About Cops, Criminals and the Chase. A former news writer for The Associated Press, she lives in New York.

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