Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – New Author on the Shelves – #Murder #Mystery – Redlined: A Novel of Boston by Richard W. Wise

A warm welcome to the Cafe and Bookstore to Richard W. Wise with his books. And  today I am featuring his most recent release, Redlined: A Novel of Boston

About the book

The year is 1974. Boston’s Jamaica Plain is a neighborhood under siege, a community skating along the razor’s edge of decline. The banks have REDLINED Jamaica Plain, causing the housing market to crash, wiping out local homeowner’s lifetime investments and opening the neighborhood to blockbusters and slumlords. Now, someone has begun systematically torching those abandoned buildings and the charred body of Sandy Morgan, a dedicated young neighborhood organizer, has been found among the ashes. Why? Who stands to gain?

Community organizer and Marine combat veteran, Jedidiah Flynt and Alex Jordan, his beautiful Harvard educated researcher together with a group of local property owners are determined to stop the redlining and and bring the arsonists responsible for Sandy Morgan’s death to justice. Their search will lead them through a labyrinth of corrupt politicians, Asian gangsters and bent churchmen.
Two interwoven plots work their way through the narrative, one is absolutely true, the other never happened, but might have.

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Apr 16, 2020 Diane rated it Five Stars

Redlined: A Novel of Boston is set in 1974 and focuses on the Jamaica Plain section of town. This area has been redlined by banks, due to the housing market’s crash, which sets the stage for racial steering and blockbusting, prompting the transition from a healthy neighborhood to a slum. Abandoned buildings to proliferate as crime rises.

When a building is burned and the body of a community activist is uncovered, fellow community organizer and Marine combat veteran Jedidiah Flynt and assistant Alexis Jordan become determined to stop the destruction of the neighborhood. They assume the role of amateur investigators who probe the arson and death with a focus and determination reflective of their abilities.

All too soon, however, adversity strikes even closer to home. Jedediah and Alexis face their own prejudices, pasts, and the initial discomfort of a forthright, sexual woman confronting a former Marine already uncomfortable with the power women have assumed in society and the workplace. These experiences capture the first phase in the blossoming women’s movement that was to change many of these roles.

This interpersonal interplay of emotions sets the stage for a dual confrontation as the unlikely team forays into unfamiliar territory both personally and politically.

At first, Redlined reads with the setup and motivation of a murder mystery. Readers are in for a bigger treat, however, because Richard W. Wise incorporates real, contemporary social issues and tensions into this story, along with a special dynamic between the investigators, which elevates his read beyond a typical whodunit.

From Jedediah’s ability to face Alex’s charge that he is a “consummate opportunist’ whose worldview affects his life choices and taints his perspective to their shared zeal and campaign, the politics which plays dirty tricks behind the scenes in Boston affairs, and gang members (a coalition of actors; real estate agents, developers, crime syndicate, who make money from the destruction of an urban neighborhood) who play a key part in community choices and makeup, Richard W. Wise tailors the kind of story that is steeped as much in Boston’s unique cultural and social makeup as it is in community struggles to change it.

While investigative mystery readers will be the likely audience of Redlined, the story will especially appeal to women who like their characters strong and purposeful. Another audience will be readers familiar with Boston’s cultural milieu, who will find Redlined an absorbing series of conundrums that lead ever deeper into the heart of a community’s manipulations, politics, and social interactions. Highly recommended.
–D. Donovan, Sr. Reviewer, Midwest Book Review

Read the other reviews and buy the book: Amazon US

And: Amazon UK

Also by Richard W. Wise

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US

And: Amazon UK

Read more reviews and follow Richard: Goodreads

About Richard W. Wise

Richard Wise is the author of three books. His latest novel, REDLINED, a mystery thriller with a literary twist is set in Boston’s Jamaica Plain neighborhood was in paperback, and on Audible in June 2020. REDLINED was nominated for the National Book Award. Play the book trailer and the bottom of the author’s Amazon page.

The author’s first book: SECRETS OF THE GEM TRADE, THE CONNOISSEUR’S GUIDE TO PRECIOUS GEMSTONES was originally published in 2001, the second edition appeared in 2016. Extensively revised and rewritten, the 2nd edition has added 127 pages, 11 new chapters, 5 new introductory essays and 161 additional photographs.

Mr. Wise’s second book,THE FRENCH BLUE, a historical novel published in 2010 was the winner of a 2011 International Book Award in Historical Fiction. The novel is set in the 17th Century gem trade. Called “a fine piece of historical fiction” in a 5 star review by Midwest Book Review, THE FRENCH BLUE tells the back story of the Hope Diamond and the true life adventures of 17th Century gem merchant Jean-Baptiste Tavernier.

Richard Wise has enjoyed a diverse career. He is a veteran of the U. S. Coast Guard. After receiving his B.A. from the University of Rhode Island, he spent most of the decade of the 70s as a professional community organizer. Wise headed organizing projects in Massachusetts and Rhode island. In the late 1970s he left organizing and apprenticed as a goldsmith. He studied gemology at the Gemological Institute of American and received his Graduate Gemologist diploma in 1985. He founded his retail company R. W. Wise, Goldsmiths, Inc. in the early 1980s and began traveling internationally, buying gems and writing about them in 1986.

Mr. Wise’s articles have appeared in Gems & Gemology, Lapidary Journal, JQ and Colored Stone. He is a former Gemology Columnist for National Jeweler and Contributing Editor at Gem Market News. The author retired from retail in 2012 to pursue his writing. Currently, he writes a book review column for Gemmology Today Magazine. He lives in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Connect to Richard

Website: Secrets of the Gem Trade
Website: The French Blue
Facebook: Richard Wise Books

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will head over to explore Richard’s books in more detail.. thanks Sally.

23 thoughts on “Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore – New Author on the Shelves – #Murder #Mystery – Redlined: A Novel of Boston by Richard W. Wise

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