On a spring morning in 1872, former Civil War officer Ben Champion is discovered dead in his Chicago bedroom—a bayonet protruding from his back. What starts as a routine case for Detective Frank Hanley soon becomes anything but, as his investigation into Champion’s life turns up hidden truths best left buried. Meanwhile, Rivka Kelmansky’s long-lost brother, Aaron, arrives on her doorstep, along with his mulatto wife and son. Fugitives from an attack by night riders, Aaron and his family know too much about past actions that still threaten powerful men—defective guns provided to Union soldiers, and an 1864 conspiracy to establish Chicago as the capital of a Northwest Confederacy. Champion had his own connection to that conspiracy, along with ties to a former slave now passing as white and an escaped Confederate guerrilla bent on vengeance, any of which might have led to his death. Hanley and Rivka must untangle this web of circumstances, amid simmering hostilities still present seven years after the end of the Civil War, as they race against time to solve the murder, before the secrets of bygone days claim more victims.
Praise for For You Were Strangers
Honorable Mention in the Mystery category of the Foreword Reviews INDIEFAB awards, 2015
A “complex tale of hidden identities and motives” —Publishers Weekly
“Readers with a love for, or burgeoning interest in, Chicago will find For You Were Strangers as satisfying as a richly coursed meal of the era.”—Foreword Reviews
“A simply riveting combination of historical novel and detective mystery. A deftly crafted mystery/suspense thriller, For You Were Strangers clearly documents author D. M. Pirrone as a master of the genre.”—Midwest Book Review
“It isn’t hard to find a good novel set during the Civil War, but it’s rarer to find one that nimbly leaps back and forth between the war itself, to the social upheaval that arrived immediately afterward. D.M. Pirrone’s superb For You Were Strangers does just that…Even if there had been no murder in this engrossing novel, the history covered here would still make for page-turning reading…Readers who prefer relaxation reading could possibly be overwhelmed by this complex, challenging book. But readers who like deeply drawn characters combined with a whopping helping of history’s hard lessons will love it. I certainly did.” —Betty Webb, Mystery Scene
“Both the sweltering, rebuilding city of Chicago and the ruined South are described in a rich tapestry that captures the time and mood of their people. Pirrone’s writing is as detailed and crisp as her research into the people, vice, and lingering racism of Chicago…the intrigue with which Pirrone surrounds the murder is well-crafted. For fans of Chicago history this is one not to miss, but the story will also hold the attention of anyone looking for a little mystery with their history.” —Historical Novels Review
Trade Paperback ♦ ISBN 978-0-9890535-9-4 ♦ $16.99
Ebook ♦ ISBN 978-0-9967558-0-1 ♦ $6.99
Available through Ingram, Baker & Taylor, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.
FICTION/ Mystery & Detective/ Historical
6″ x 9″