Who killed the fancy dancer
in the dead of night?
The brilliantly conceived historical mystery will forever change the way you look at those who endured and survived hard times when the discovery of oil breathed hope into communities that were dying from burnt crops and wilted cotton stalks.
As one reviewer said the award-winning Boom Town Saga, “Combine The Grapes of Wrath and maybe a little Huck Finn and perhaps you will understand the magnitude of this story set in a small town in East Texas in the Great Depression. It should go down as a classic in American literature.”
An oil boom has broken the back of the Great Depression. A small East Texas town is awash with new names and new faces, and no one knows whose eyes belong to the man who carried a lovely fancy dancer from the ballroom of a Sporting House into the darkness of a rainy night and killed her.
Was it a crime of passion? Did she reject him?
Was it someone from her past?
Or was he as unfamiliar as the next roustabout or drifter walking the streets?
A preacher has set up the tent for his traveling Love and Salvation Show on the road beside the courthouse. A strange hunchback with a voice of doom casts an uneasy shadow across the town. Where did he come from? Nobody knows.
Men are spending their hard-earned money with dime-a-dance girls, looking for love, a wife, or something more sinister. Everyone has a secret. Whose secret sent the lovely Louise Fontaine to a muddy grave?
And who is the small boy who stepped off the train with a paper note attached to his coat that said: My name is Ollie Porter. My daddy is Oliver Porter. He works in the oilfields. Does anyone know where he is? Is the boy connected to the fancy dancer or, perhaps, the killer? Or is he just a waif in search of a home?
Ashland is a town without law. It is threatening to explode from the mass of humanity crowding into the oilfield. Is the death of the fancy dancer only the first? And can Doc, the charming and lovable con man, and Eudora, the beautiful widow, catch a killer before they find out who’s the next to die?