Dance Hall (Paperback)

A Novel of Sing Sing

By David Pietrusza

Createspace Independent Publishing Platform, 9781440494055, 302pp.

Publication Date: November 15, 2014

List Price: 11.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


INSPIRED BY TRUE STORIES OF DEPRESSION-ERA SING SING A Brooklyn stickup artist, his taxi-dancing wife, a murderous newspaperman, a risk-taking warden, and a wife with a dark past converge in 1930s Sing Sing heading toward death, redemption-and Ebbets Field. *** "DANCE HALL: A NOVEL OF SING SING" unveils a grand and riveting tale of a violent and desperate past, unforgettably narrated in a gripping, often wry, fashion-recorded in tears and punctuated in-rarely innocent-blood. "Dance Hall" flawlessly transports readers to a seedy, volatile 1930s underworld where love and honor and redemption jostle for mere survival with greed and lust and betrayal. "Dance Hall" reveals the story of a Brooklyn stickup artist, his taxi-dancing Filipina spouse, a murderous newspaperman, a risk-taking warden, and a wife with a dark past converging in Sing Sing, destined for love, death, forgiveness, redemption-and Ebbets Field. "Dance Hall" reveals a page-turning web of perfectly-balanced back stories: of a young parish priest gone wrong and then right again, of a brutal Bowery killer with escape on his mind, a con man with the vestige of a conscience, a thuggish Garment District goon with a devout sister, a tell-all Broadway gossip columnist who can make or break you, a rat of an accomplice, a once-disgraced private detective who now surprisingly elevates a principle above a paycheck. Read "Dance Hall" and you live and breathe life inside cold and desperate prison halls and cells; sweaty and often violent Brooklyn dime-a-dance dance halls; threadbare tenements, back-alley speakeasies where anything you wanted badly enough was for sale; the offices of the rich and powerful and still conflicted; and of a waiting area for Sing Sing's "Death Row" called "The Dance Hall"-all while returning you to Depression days when hope reigned supreme. Because hope was all you had.

About the Author

Called one "of the best historians in the United States," "one of the great political historians of all time," and "the undisputed champion of chronicling American Presidential campaigns." David Pietrusza has produced a number of critically-acclaimed works concerning 20th century American history. Critics have compared his work to that of Eric Larson, H. L. Mencken, Theodore H. White, Edmund Morris, and Doris Kearns Goodwin. His "1948: Harry Truman's Improbable Victory and the Year that Transformed America," a study of the dramatic 1948 presidential campaign, is a selection of the History Book Club, the Book-of-the-Month Club, and the Literary Guild. ForeWord Magazine designated his book "1960: LBJ vs JFK vs Nixon: The Epic Campaign that Forged Three Presidencies" as among the best political biographies. Pulitzer Prize winner Robert Caro has termed "1960" "terrific." Pietrusza's "1920: The Year of the Six Presidents" received a Kirkus starred review, was honored as a Kirkus "Best Books of 2007" title, and was named an alternate selection of the History Book Club. Historian Richard Norton Smith has listed "1920: The Year of the Six Presidents" as being among the best studies of presidential campaigns. Pietrusza's biography of Arnold Rothstein entitled "Rothstein: The Life, Times & Murder of the Criminal Genius Who Fixed the 1919 World Series" was a finalist for the 2003 Edgar Award. Rothstein's audio version won an AUDIOFILE Earphones Award. Pietrusza has edited three volumes on the career and works of Calvin Coolidge. Says Amity Shlaes: "an authority on the 1920s and [Calvin] Coolidge . . . David Pietrusza has brought Coolidge back to life with his volumes about the president . . ." Pietrusza's biography of baseball's first commissioner, Kenesaw Mountain Landis,""Judge and Jury," a Finalist for the 1998 Seymour Medal and a NASSH Book Award nominee, won the 1998 CASEY Award. Pietrusza collaborated with baseball legend Ted Williams on an autobiography called "Ted Williams: My Life in Pictures." Pietrusza served as president (1993-97) of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR), co-editor of "Total Baseball: The Official Encyclopedia of Major League Baseball," and as editor-in-chief of the publishing company Total Sports. His study of the 1932 elections, "1932: The Rise of Hitler and FDR - Two Tales of Politics, Betrayal, and Unlikely Destiny" will be published by Lyons Press in August 2015.