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Soft Money

Ken Wishnia et al.

Even the best cops burn out. 23 Shades of Black’s Filomena Buscarsela returns, having traded in her uniform for the trials of single motherhood. Once a cop, always a cop. She may have left the department, but Filomena’s passion for justice burns as hot as ever. And when the owner of her neighborhood bodega is murdered—just another “ethnic” crime that will probably go unsolved and unavenged—Filomena doesn’t need much prodding from the dead man’s grieving sister to step in. Secretly partnered with a rookie cop, she hits the Washington Heights streets to smoke out the trigger-happy punks who ended an innocent life as callously as if they were blowing out a match.

From the labyrinthine subway tunnels of upper Broadway to the upscale enclaves that house the rich and beautiful, from local barrio hangouts to high-priced seats of power, Filomena follows a trail of dirty secrets and dirtier politics, with some unexpected stops in between. In a town big enough to hold every kind of criminal, crackpot, liar, and thief, from ruthless gangsters to corporate executives drunk on greed and power, she tracks a killer through the city’s danger zones.

Praise:

“Great fun…Fil is a hyperbolic character, spewing enough acerbic opinions to fill half a dozen average mysteries. A spirited sequel.”
Publishers Weekly

“Wishnia’s world is like a New York subway train—fast, loud, dirty, and dangerous—but it’s well worth the ride with Filomena Buscarsela in the driver’s seat. A hard-edged story gracefully told.”
Booklist

“Sharp and sexy… Hilarious and exciting… [Wishnia] has a perfect ear for female urban angst.”
Chicago Tribune

“Nonstop activity, wry humor, mordant characterizations, and a solid dollop of police procedure make this a hugely appealing follow-up to 23 Shades of Black.”
Library Journal

“Sizzling…memorable characters, genuine surprises, and fine writing… 23 Shades of Black took the mystery world by storm. Soft Money keeps the winds in full swirl.”
Book Page

About the Author:

Kenneth Wishnia was born in Hanover, N.H., to a roving band of traveling academics. He has lived and worked (and been chased by riot police) on three continents, including several years in Scotland, France, and Ecuador. The urgent need for a day job forced him to earn a B.A. from Brown University (1982) and a Ph.D. in comparative literature from SUNY Stony Brook (1996). He teaches writing, literature, and other deviant forms of thought at Suffolk Community College in Brentwood, Long Island, where he is an Associate Professor of English.

His first novel, 23 Shades of Black, was nominated for the Edgar and the Anthony Awards and madeBooklist’s Best First Mystery list, and was followed by five other novels, including Soft Money, a Library Best Mystery of the Year, Red House, a Washington Post Book World “Rave” Book of the Year, and The Fifth Servant, an Indie Notable selection and a finalist for the Sue Feder Memorial Historical Mystery Award.

About Gary Phillips (Introduction)

Gary Phillips writes tales of mayhem and menace. In other pursuits he’s been a union rep, run a nonprofit begun as a response to the ‘92 L.A. riots, taught incarcerated youth, was a community organizer in South Central Los Angeles where he was born and raised, toiled as a printer, worked for one of those shadowy 527s, and delivered dog cages. Please visit his website at: www.gdphillips.com.

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