Format Hardcover
Publication Date 08/15/14
ISBN 9781605985817
Trim Size / Pages 9.3 x 6.4 in / 304

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Really the Blues

A Mystery

Joseph Koenig

Eddie Piron thinks that performing in jazz clubs in Nazi-occupied Paris is bad enough, but when the drummer in his band is found facedown in the Seine and the police start asking questions, he realizes that his trouble is only beginning

Paris, 1941. American jazz musician Eddie Piron has lived in the city of light since before the war began. But Paris under occupation is not what it once was, and things are looking a lot darker for a man like Eddie. The great jazz artists of the day, like Django Reinhardt, are lying low or being swept away under the racial policies of the Nazis. But the SS has a paradoxical taste for the "negermusik" and their favorite gathering place is La Caverne Negre, where Eddie leads the band.

One night the drummer for "Eddie et Ses Anges", an indifferent musician but an essential part of the band, disappears. When his body is found in the Seine the next day, Eddie becomes entangled in the murder investigation. He soon finds himself in the clutches of a mercenary intelligence broker who discovers why Eddie Piron is really in Paris—and what he's really hiding.

Nominated for the prestigious Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best First Novel for Floater in 1986, Joseph Koenig followed his debut with three more novels in close succession, culminating with the New York Times Notable Book Brides of Blood in 1993. After a twenty year absence, his critically acclaimed False Negative (2012) marked his return to publishing.

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Endorsements & Reviews

“A subtle, atmospheric and delightfully edgy historical thriller.” Kirkus, "10 of the Most Memorable Crime Novels of 2014"
“Author Joseph Koenig has taken his time to set the mood in Really the Blues, drawing us into Eddie’s day-to-day life as the ugly realities of Nazi occupation become clear. Mystery and history buffs alike will enjoy Koenig’s attention to period detail and strong storytelling in this satisfying read.” Mystery Scene
“Accomplished. An absorbing portrayal of life under the German occupation.” Publishers Weekly
“Grounding his subtle and complex thriller in rewardingly nuanced characters, Koenig creates an atmospheric world and delivers a series of satisfying surprises.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Details, crisp and crackling dialogue, and vibrant characters bring occupied Paris and her citizens to life. The story flies along at a breathless pace as tension mounts, builds, and never lets up. An instant classic noir. Highly recommended.” The Historical Novels Review