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The careers of New York City detective Simon Ziele and his former partner Captain Declan Mulvaney went in remarkably different directions after the tragic death of Ziele’s fiancée in the 1904 General Slocum ferry disaster. Although both men were earmarked for much bigger things, Ziele moved to Dobson, a small town north of the city, to escape the violence, and Mulvaney buried himself even deeper, agreeing to head up the precinct in the most crime-ridden area in the city.
Yet with all of the detectives and resources at Mulvaney’s disposal, a particularly puzzling crime compels him to look for someone he can trust absolutely. When a chorus girl is found dead on a Broadway stage dressed in the leading lady’s costume, there are no signs of violence, no cuts, no bruises—no marks at all. If pressed, the coroner would call it a suicide, but then that would make her the second girl to turn up dead in such a manner in the last few weeks. And the news of a possible serial killer would be potentially disastrous to the burgeoning theater world, not to mention the citizens of New York.
Following on the heels of Stefanie Pintoff’s acclaimed and award-winning debut, A Curtain Falls is a moody and evocative tale that follows Ziele and his partners as they scour the dark streets of early-twentieth-century New York in search of a true fiend.
About the Author
Stefanie Pintoff is the author of In the Shadow of Gotham and Secret of the White Rose. In the Shadow of Gotham is the winner of the 2010 Edgar Award for Best First Novel and the Washington Irving Book Prize, and she has earned nominations for the Agatha, Anthony and Macavity Awards. She is also a graduate of Columbia University Law School and has a Ph.D. in literature from New York University. Now a full-time writer, she lives with her husband and daughter on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.
Praise for A Curtain Falls…
Praise for In the Shadow of Gotham
“Superior historical mystery… The author has inevitably been compared to Caleb Carr, whom she certainly rivals in her meticulous research into the period and its fledgling forensics.… She does an outstanding job of blending historical detail with engaging characters and a suspenseful plot.”
—The Denver Post
“Pintoff excavates a rich vein of early criminology.… She also delivers a gripping detective story.… Great for dexterous plotting and for New York atmosphere at the turn of the last century.”
“Will remind many of Caleb Carr at his best.”
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“What a fabulous first novel… Pintoff’s fascinating historical mystery has believable multidimensional characters.”
—Romantic Times (Best First Mystery of 2009)
"The first winner of the Minotaur Books/Mystery Writers of America First Crime Novel Competition nicely contrasts academic theorizing with the reality of police detection set against the backdrop of a vividly depicted turn-of-the-century Gotham. Recommended to readers who enjoy historicals of this period, such as Caleb Carr’s The Alienist and Ann Stamos’s Bitter Tide.”
—Library Journal (starred review)