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March 10 , 2009

Smoke-Filled Rooms: A Smokey Dalton Novel


On the run after the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., Private Investigator Smokey Dalton has settled under an assumed name in Chicago. But history won’t leave him alone. His job in security at the Chicago Hilton places him in the center of the protests at the 1968 Democratic Convention. Worse, a killer works his South Side neighborhood.

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Days of Rage: A Smokey Dalton Novel

Chicago, 1969: The trial of eight protestors from the Democratic Convention the previous year has the whole world watching—and all of Chicagoland on edge. Smokey Dalton feels the pressure: more cops on the streets, more FBI in his neighborhood. But when the landlord at one of Sturdy Investments’ South Side properties dies alone in his apartment,…

Smokey can’t ignore the crimes, any more than he can ignore the tension building in the city that hot August. He must take action, before he loses everything.

Chosen as one of the top ten mystery novels of the year by both Deadly Pleasures and Booklist, Smoke-Filled Rooms fulfills the promise of the award-winning Dangerous Road, and makes Smokey Dalton into one of the mystery field’s most memorable detectives.

“This is mystery fiction at its highest, most gripping level.” Chicago Tribune

“A blistering rendition of the ’60s racial wars marks this series as a standout as early as its second entry. You don’t need to be a fan of private-eye novels to admire Smokey: You just need a conscience.”
Kirkus Reviews starred review

“Nelscott does a superb job of using a familiar historical moment to dramatize an intimate human drama, as Smokey and Jimmy struggle to avoid becoming anonymous casualties lost behind the headlines. This series has all the passion and precision of Walter Mosley’s early Easy Rawlins novels, but it is not derivative. In fact, Smokey just may be a more compelling character than the celebrated Easy.”
Booklist starred review

Kris Nelscott is an open pen name used by USA Today bestselling author Kristine Kathryn Rusch.  
The first Smokey Dalton novel, A Dangerous Road, won the Herodotus Award for Best Historical Mystery and was short-listed for the Edgar Award for Best Novel; the second, Smoke-Filled Rooms, was a PNBA Book Award finalist; and the third, Thin Walls, was one of the Chicago Tribune’s best mysteries of the year. Kirkus chose Days of Rage as one of the top ten mysteries of the year and it was also nominated for a Shamus award for The Best Private Eye Hardcover Novel of the Year.  
Entertainment Weekly says her equals are Walter Mosley and Raymond Chandler. Booklist calls the Smokey Dalton books “a high-class crime series” and Salon says “Kris Nelscott can lay claim to the strongest series of detective novels now being written by an American author.”
For more information about Kris Nelscott, or author Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s other works, please go to or


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