Page 45 Review by Jonathan
"You decent, Miss Chandler?"
She really isn't. In any sense whatsoever! One of the three titular misbehavin' ladies, Miss Carole Chandler is a gangster's moll, trapped in her life of luxury as the decorative arm candy of the mob casino manager Mr. Rothman in glamorous Havana, Cuba. The other two soon-to-be dishonest dames being single mum mambo queen Ana and revolutionary jazz singer Taffy. Revolutionary in the Che Guevara sense, rather than some scat vocal malarkey, I should add. All of our trio are about to decide that a permanent vacation from the Pearl of the Antilles would be a very good idea indeed for considerably differing reasons.
But then it's amazing what six million dollars in 'missing' mob money - plus the untimely death of a visiting New York capo - can do to make up your mind that a last-minute getaway is in order. It's just that getting their very important hand luggage out of the country is going to prove even harder than negotiating an online booking with Ryan Air without shelling out more than a heap of cash in hidden extras. They're all about keeping their cash. Well, it's not their cash yet, but, you know, working on it.
So... it's New Years Eve 1958, the El Eden casino joint is jumping and Havana is awash with US dollars being splashed around by well-heeled tourists and movie stars lording it over the impoverished locals. The American high-rollers were welcomed with open arms under the US-backed President Batista, but with rebels lurking around practically every corner, the times they are a-changing... Well, just about to...
Indeed, the glorious revolutionaries finally tasted ultimate victory in the early hours of New Year's Day 1959 as Batista panicked and decided it was time to take his own ill-gotten megabucks and run. (Just for the record, Batista made it out to the Dominican Republic before eventually settling into political exile in Portugal.) And so Cubans welcomed in 1959 with a certain Fidel Castro about to take charge.
But will our ensemble of ladies make it out amidst the fireworks of New Year's Eve and the bullets of the Brigadas, or will the mounting chaos prove an impossible barrier to their own great escape?
This is a hot and humid, sweaty and sexy slick heist thriller penned by Alex MAYDAY De Campi with glorious, glamorous period art that has more than a dash of Darwyn Cooke about it from Victor VIOLENT LOVE Santos. If you like your crime with a touch of class and more than a splash of nerve-wracking suspense, I think this will prove a hit.
The first few copies come with a signed sticker from Alex herself guaranteed to provide free passage out of any revolutionary hot zone...*
* This may be a slight fib.