Temptation is everywhere.
It's July, 1923. By day twenty-year-old Tiny O’Mara works for her father’s smalltime bootlegging operation. By night she craves the roll-your-stockings-down lifestyle of a flapper, but with her mother gone, she’s usually stuck at home with two younger sisters—until her father is kidnapped by a mobster in Detroit's exploding organized crime scene, and it’s Tiny who has to come up with the ten-thousand-dollar ransom.
In one week.
Enzo DiFiore’s screen-idol looks and dangerous charm leave her breathless, even though he’s the son of the mobster holding her father hostage. But when the forbidden spark between them refuses to burn out, she tries to use their powerful attraction to buy more time.
And then there’s Joey Lupo, the irritatingly handsome pest from her childhood who’s got the street smarts Tiny needs to smuggle enough booze to make a quick ten grand. But he’s got his own agenda where gang rivalries are concerned, and despite his promise to protect her, Tiny isn’t sure she can trust Joey—or stop her growing feelings for him.
To save her father’s life, she’ll have to choose between them. But deciding whom to trust isn’t easy in a world where everyone wants something—be it booze, money, power, or sex—and no one cares what it takes to get it.
Tiny is a 20-year-old girl dreaming of someday finishing nursing school, and moving out of her dad’s house. Tiny works for her father’s bootlegging operation while simultaneously helping out in her older sister’s small grocery store when she is needed. At night, she craves the lifestyle of the flapper, but instead is at home taking care of the kids. NOT HER KIDS, her own little sisters, While their dad is off customizing cars with hidden compartments, gambling or picking up the shipment of booze that’s just come in over the lake.
One day, about a week after Tiny notices “The Sheik”, aka Enzo, coming into her family’s grocery store. Enzo comes into her store asking her to pass something on to her father. That night her father goes missing.
Oh no, what’s a girl to do? Enters Joey, a serious pain in Tiny’s ass, but someone she and her family have known all her life. With his help, she is able to collect the ransom money needed to get her dad back.
The chemistry between Enzo and Tiny is explosive, and Tiny tries to use it to her advantage. But what’s this? An almost unwanted attraction for Joey has decided to sneak up on Tiny. Who is she going to choose? The mobster whose family has kidnapped her dad, or the boy from down the street that she’s known all her life and has done all he can to help her get her dad back?
Once I started reading this book, I COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN. IT WAS AMAZING. It was like reading through an episode of Boardwalk Empire: DETROIT. Bootlegging, dancing, gangs, sex, etc. It’s all there. Though instead of Atlantic City, it takes place in Detroit, Michigan. The writing and detailing of this story is flawless and the execution of it is as well. The characters were well written and I enjoyed all of them. Melanie really did her research into 1920s fashion, Detroit history, Prohibition, etc. to write this story and make it seem REAL.
Being a native of Michigan, I hardly ever get to read books that take place in my own state. When I do get to, it’s nice to already know what is being referenced to in the book. Yes, Speak Easy does take place in the Roaring 20s, but that doesn’t mean the streets and various parts of Detroit and the suburbs that were mentioned in this book do not still exist today!
I enjoyed this book and I cannot WAIT FOR THE NEXT ONE. Thank you, Melanie, for letting me read and review your book. 🙂
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