Murder for the Modern Girl

This YA mystery is an exciting, slightly supernatural romp through the glitzy, glamorous Chicago of the Roaring Twenties.

Eighteen-year-old Ruby splits her nights between "glamming around parties" with her high society friends and poisoning men whose crimes against women have gone unpunished. She uses her mind-reading ability to hunt "killers, monsters, abusers, men who discarded women with no more care than tossing out a spent cigarette." When her trail of bodies draws the attention of an unassuming yet brilliant morgue employee named Guy, Ruby finds herself falling for perhaps the only person capable of uncovering her secret. Ruby and Guy's dual points of view create suspense as the two become ensnared in a deadly web of political corruption.

Kendall Kulper (Salt & Storm) upends the conventions of a traditional noir caper with a story of a femme fatale heroine who kills to protect vulnerable women. Ruby's characterization as a deadly and competent "glam gal" who loves "good parties and hot jazz" challenges stereotypical portrayals of the flapper girl as silly and shallow. "Sweet and soft" Guy is a romantic lead who embodies non-toxic masculinity; his relationship with Ruby is both swoon-worthy and built upon mutual respect. Fans of Libba Bray's The Diviners series should enjoy this feminist and fantasy-tinged historical mystery. --Alanna Felton, freelance reviewer

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