ABOUT THE BOOK:
31 Bond Street, an unforgettable literary debut from Ellen Horan, is based on the true story of a brutal murder, a desperate mother and mistress, and the vicious constraints of 19th century society. Fans of Caleb Carr’s The Alienist, Edith Wharton’s The House of Myrth, and John Berendt’s Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil will love the stunning prose and beautiful imagery of 31 Bond Street.
Who killed Dr. Harvey Burdell?
Though there are no witnesses and no clues, fingers point to Emma Cunningham, the refined, pale-skinned widow who managed Burdell’s house and his servants. Rumored to be a black-hearted gold digger with designs on the doctor’s name and fortune, Emma is immediately put under house arrest during a murder investigation. A swift conviction is sure to catapult flamboyant district attorney Abraham Oakey Hall into the mayor’s seat. But one formidable obstacle stands in his way: the defense attorney Henry Clinton. Committed to justice and the law, Clinton will aid the vulnerable widow in her desperate fight to save herself from the gallows.
Set in 1857 New York, this gripping mystery is also a richly detailed excavation of a lost age. Horan vividly re-creates a tumultuous era characterized by a sensationalist press, aggressive new wealth, a booming real-estate market, corruption, racial conflict, economic inequality between men and women, and the erosion of the old codes of behavior. A tale of murder, sex, greed, and politics, this spellbinding narrative transports readers to a time that eerily echoes our own.ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
A photo editor for books and magazines, Ellen Horan has worked on staff and in a freelance capacity for many publications, including Vanity Fair , Vogue , House & Garden , Forbes , and ARTnews , as well as for a number of book publishers. 31 Bond Street is her first novel.
Visit Ellen's website regarding the book at 31 Bond Street.com.
Set in the influential New York City of 1857 and based on the true story of a gruesome murder that occurred at that time, Helen Horan’s first novel, 31 BOND STREET, reads like a sophisticated murder mystery and does not disappoint. Bond Street was the stylish heart of the wealthy and prosperous in New York City in that time, complete from the clichéd high society to the stereotypical policemen of the era.
As Horan’s novel begins, John, a young errand boy, finds his employer, the dentist Dr. Burdell, brutally murdered in his office. As one of the these residents who lived at 31 Bond Street, Dr. Harvey Burdell, had a young woman, Emma Cunningham and her daughters, living upstairs in his house and of course all suspicion is directed at her. Emma appeals to Mr. Henry Clinton, local criminal attorney, for help because she has been confined to 31 Bond Street without representation by the prosecutor who is confident that Emma is involved and seeks an easy conviction.
The well-defined characters make the story ring true starting with the victim, Harvey Burdell, who is depicted as being a complete scum, a womanizer, and involved in corruption which includes transporting slaves, to the accused Emma Cunningham. Bell’s negro driver, Samuel, John, the 11 year old errand boy, defense attorney Henry Clinton, an attorney without an immoral bone in his body, and the corrupt district attorney, Abraham Oakley Hall round out the main players in what is a shocking balance of murder, suspense, and passion. The subplots of slave trade and the corrupt police department add to the accurate depiction of this era in American history. An intriguing drama of a historically themed suspense, Ellen Horan’s time-honored novel is alive with mystery, excitement, conspiracy and nostalgia and is worthy of your attention.
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