Valentin St. Cyr
Created by David Fulmer

Creole detective VALENTIN ST. CYR works the carnival world of 1907 Storyville, New Orleans. In this notorious red-light district, sporting girls ply the trade in mansion parlors and dime-a-trick cribs, cocaine and opium are sold over the counter, rye whiskey flows like an amber river, and the nights echo with a brash new music. At least that's what author David Fulmer assures me is the case.

As St. Cyr first appears in Chasing the Devil's Tail (2001), Valentin is hired by Tom Anderson, "The King of Storyville," to investigate a series of vicious murders of prostitutes. To complicate matters, a prime suspect is his childhood friend Buddy Bolden, the progenitor of "jass," who is in the process of going insane, even as he lights up the New Orleans night with his wild horn. And that's just the beginning. And Anderson and Bolden are just two of the historical figures Fulmer weaves into his tale. also along for the ride are such luminaries as piano player Ferdinand LeMenthe (later to be known as Jelly Roll Morton), E.J. Bellocq, the infamous photographer of New Orleans whores, and notorious madam Lulu White.

An impressive debut, by almost any measure, nominated for a 2002 Los Angeles Times Book Prize and a 2002 Shamus Award, and featured on several year-end lists, including Booklist 's"Best New Series," January Magazine's "Best of 2001," and one of the Mysterious Book Store's "Books of the Month." Fulmer's since followed it up with two sequels, Jass (2005) and Rampart Street (2006). And in 2008, he published The Blue Door, which introduces odd-ball P.I. team of Eddie Cero and Sal Giambroni who pry their trade in the early rock-and-roll era of Philadelphia.

UNDER OATH

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Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith. Thanks, Dave.


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