Friday, April 28, 2017

Tenderloin -- Court Haslett

Tenderloin is set in San Francisco in 1978, at the time when Jim Jones has moved his People's Temple out of the city to Guyana.  That doesn't mean his influence is gone, and it doesn't mean that he can't reach out and have someone killed by a very scary enforcer, however, and that's what happens in the novel.

The story is narrated by Sleeper Hayes, a Tenderloin resident who knows the area and a lot more.  He's a former hippie who's a gambler and doesn't mind partaking of drink and drugs from time to time.  He's also an amateur sleuth who gets involved in finding the killer of a hooker, and things get very dangerous for him before it's all over.  The trail of corruption goes right to the top of the city government, and a number of historical personages figure into the plot.

Haslett lays on the Tenderloin local color in just the right amounts, and he also works in some of the music and culture of the era to add to the mix.  If you're looking for a different kind of historical mystery, here it is.  Check it out.

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