As The Liquor Flows
by Angela Christina Archer
Publisher & Release: Long Valley Press, March 19, 2016
Time and setting: 1931, NYC
Genre: Historical Romance
Length: 256 pages
Heat Level: 1 Flames
Rating: 4.5 Gold Crowns
Black Tuesday, October 29, 1929, the day the stock market crashed, and the day Evelyn Ford will never forget.
With the untimely death of her parents and the loss of their only income, Evelyn, and her brother, Frank flee to a make-shift hovel built in Central Park.
After Frank mysteriously goes missing, bare cupboards force Evelyn to seek employment anywhere she can find work, even if that means working at a burlesque theater.
Catching the attention of Don Vincent Giovanni, a Kingpin in the New York mafia, Evelyn discovers that Frank is serving time in prison for running hooch and he owes Vincent a lot of money. In order to pay off her brother's debt, Evelyn is thrown into the world of mobsters and bootlegging.
Between running hooch all over the city of New York and trying to save her brother, Evelyn finds herself drawn to Max Catalano, Vincent's Consigliere. Even with secrets of his own, he's the only one she can trust when she entangles herself in the middle of the New York mafia crime wars.
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I received a request from the author to read As the Liquor Flows in exchange for an honest review. At first, I hesitated since I had accepted several books for review, but the book description was so intriguing I decided to accept. Wow! I am so glad I did.
Evelyn Ford is desperate. Her brother is missing, the cupboards bare. She must find some way to survive. She leaves her hovel in Central Park to look for work.
When she applies for a job at a Burlesque theater, she meets Vincent Giovanni, a man she senses is dangerous, but her circumstances force her to accept a position against her better judgment. Vincent’s second in command, Max Catalano, visits her while she’s dressing, tells her to leave and never come back, after shoving a fist full of money in her hands. She runs as if the hounds of hell are at her heels.
Later that day, she finds Vincent, along with Max at her door. She learns her brother’s in jail and owes the kingpin big money. He expects her to pay by being his new girl. When he threatens her Frank’s life, she has no choice but go with him.
Although her mind tells her to not trust Max, her heart tells her otherwise. Can she believe in him when he appears to be as big a mobster as her new boss?
I thoroughly enjoyed this book from the first page to the last. I could not read fast enough! As the Liquor Flows is fast-paced with plenty of excitement. It is written in first person POV, which is not my personal favorite, but the writing flows smoothly, and that POV fits this book perfectly.
Evelyn is a great heroine. Even though she finds herself in a life-threatening situation, she does not let it destroy her. I loved her bravery and determination to survive and do whatever she needed to do to figure out how to get out of Vincent’s clutches.
At first, I could not figure out Max’s character, but the more I read the more I liked him. Although I did not know what his secret was, I sensed he would turn out a good guy. He’s an intriguing character, one I thoroughly enjoyed.
I loved the vivid description of the attire, the cars, and houses. It really made feel as if I had been dropped into that time period. I found the part about the hovels in Central Park fascinating. I never imagined anything like that had ever happened. This is a period of history I have read very little about.
If you’re looking for a book with a unique twist with unforgettable characters, then you will enjoy this high suspense, well-written novel. I know I certainly did. Happy reading!