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Step into the dark alleys of 1840 New York City…
Standing on the grimy banks of the Hudson River, street urchin Augie Dubbins spots a young woman toss her baby into the wat...
Step into the dark alleys of 1840 New York City…
Standing on the grimy banks of the Hudson River, street urchin Augie Dubbins spots a young woman toss her baby into the water, then jump in herself. As the only witness to the tragedy, Augie sees an opportunity to make a few pennies recounting the events, and in doing so encounters a struggling young journalist named Edgar Allan Poe, a poet and newspaper hack whose penchant for saying the wrong thing at the wrong time has earned him more than a few enemies.
When the unlikely duo discover the body of yet another young woman shortly after, they become entrapped in a mire of murder, greed, and power that stretches from the Five Points slums to the gleaming heights of Fifth Avenue.
“Silvis delivers pungent impressions of the living city, exploring its mansions, slums, morgue, prisons, poorhouses and opium dens for all the ambient sounds and smells that define the c...
“Silvis delivers pungent impressions of the living city, exploring its mansions, slums, morgue, prisons, poorhouses and opium dens for all the ambient sounds and smells that define the character of a busy, brawling, unwashed metropolis.” - Marilyn Stasio, New York Times Book Review
“A riveting tale of murder and betrayal…. On Night’s Shore drips with descriptive power.” - The New York Post
“From the poetry of his opening words to the last line, Randall Silvis maintains the illusion of effortless flow that draws the reader from page to page without pause…. The writing is rich, fluid, packed with controlled energy, unobtrusive. The language, the imagery, the plot flow together without a snag. In fact, Silvis’s talent has made writing this review intensely difficult. How do you describe a perfect dive, or a Ray Brown bass solo, or moonlight on snow? You can’t; they must be experienced. On Night’s Shore attains that kind of perfection—a page-turner that leaves the reader breathless with the force of its beauty.” - Erie Times-News
“Move over, Caleb Carr. Randall Silvis's writing is exquisite and true.” - Mann Meyers, author of The Lucifer Contract
“Stylish, dark-toned adventure...gritty and opulent.” - Publishers Weekly
“Who better to obsess about the death of a beautiful young woman than Edgar Allan Poe, here seen in his journalist days with the Mirror in the New York of 1840? Poe appears through the perspective of Augie Dubbins, a one-time street urchin and petty criminal now writing, as an old man, about the death that brought him and Poe together. The body of a young woman is discovered under a pier in the Hudson River; Poe is assigned to cover the event for his paper and meets Dobbins at the docks. The streetwise Dubbins convinces Poe that the official explanation, that the woman killed herself after a botched abortion, doesn’t fit the facts of the discovery, especially that her bonnet was tied with a sailor’s knot. The unlikely pair embark on an investigation that rises from the docks all the way to the unabashed wealth of Fifth Avenue. Although the mystery is well constructed, the real intrigue of this novel is the way in which Poe’s personality, his household (then consisting of his aunt Martha and his tubercular child bride, Virginia), and his writings are the subject of Dobbins’ musings and analysis. First-rate history mystery and critique on Poe” - Booklist
“The mystery behind ‘The Mystery of Marie Roget’ is just one of the classic Poe themes woven into Randall Silvis's narrative, along with the always tantalizing puzzle of Poe's own ferocious and unique creativity. Silvis's story is compelling.” - Otto Penzler, Penzler’s Picks
“In the hands of Randall Silvis, the New York of 1840, from its rural edges to its tenements of squalor, pulses with life, and the dark subtlety of Edgar Allan Poe's character slowly takes up residence in the reader's mind. Here in On Night’s Shore the gloomy and much-beset father of our genre is granted a light-filled window in the person of a street urchin named Augie Dubbins. Would that we might see more of this pair.” - Laurie R. King, bestselling author of Night Work
“The real delight here is the portrayal of Manhattan's bawdy underworld and its nefarious characters. Comparisons to Caleb Carr's The Alienist are inevitable and not unwarranted. Fans of Bruce Alexander's Sir John Fielding series and Laurie King's The Beekeeper's Apprentice will also be delighted with this work. One hopes that we shall see Poe and his young apprentice work many more cases.” - Library Journal
“The father of the modern detective story takes center stage in a riveting tale of murder, corruption and redemption…. Silvis recreates 1840s New York with an unstinting and often brutal clarity. His elegant, evocative prose is suggestive of Poe's own style and his narrative integrates elements from Poe's more popular works. The characters, real and fictional alike, are masterpieces of insight into the human experience. Nowhere is this insight more evident than in the author's rendering of Edgar Allan Poe, a brilliant, compassionate and fatally complex man whose devotion to his work was exceeded only by his love for his family.” - Kelly Cannon Reviews
“On Night's Shore is a sinuous, surprising narrative filled with deceptions, betrayals, unexpected revelations, and moments of high drama. It is also an extravagantly detailed recreation of a particular time and place. Silvis's rendering of 19th-century New York -- the slums and hovels, the workhouses and prisons, the offices and taverns, and the hyperbolic splendor of the mansions of the rich -- is precise and thoroughly imagined, giving the novel an unmistakable aura of authenticity. Mostly, though, On Night's Shore is a novel of character. Augie Dubbins, who narrates the story from the altered vantage point of an 80-year-old man, is a complex character in his own right, and a credible witness to the assorted dramas of his vanished past. Through Augie, we see Poe as a driven, sometimes contradictory creature: vain, embittered, generous, noble, foolish, and kind, a born writer hopelessly addicted to the darkness at the center of his soul. This multi-layered portrait dominates the novel and accounts for much of its surprising emotional power. Anyone interested in Poe's career, in American literary history, or in historical fiction at its finest needs to read this book.” - Bill Sheehan, Editor, BarnesandNoble.com
“On Night’s Shore is a multi-layered mystery...boasting terrific action sequences, vivid descriptions, a close-up look at Poe’s flawless interrogation technique, and a great backdrop in the New York City of 1840. ” - Michael Doyle, Epinions
Length: 8.25 in
Width: 5.5 in
Weight: 0.00 oz
Page Count: 400 pages