A young woman, hired to keep the books at a down-at-the-heels nightclub, is taken under the wing of the infamous Gloria Denton, a mob luminary who reigned during the Golden Era of Bugsy Siegel and Lucky Luciano. Before she knows it, she's ushered into a glittering demimonde of late-night casinos, racetracks, betting parlors, inside heists, and big, big money.
Winner of 2008 Edgar® Award! Winner of Barry Award! BookSense Notable Pick
Abbott dishes up in her third novel stiletto heels, pointed, deadly, and good over small distances, leaving readers looking for more. This is All About Eve pulped to a fare-thee-well à la Jim Thomson.
"In the sly and stylish Queenpin, Megan Abbott gives a feminine spin to hard- boiled crime, crafting a tale of grifters and their marks."
"Edgar-finalist Abbott delivers a sharp, slender, hardboiled tale of a protégé’s schooling by a notorious, been-there-done-that moll... Abbott is pitch-perfect throughout: Gloria Denton, still turning heads in her 40s, is as hard a moll as any, and the kid is a beautiful combination of foil and tool as she strives to emulate her role model. The collision, violent and inevitable, rips away the facade of glitz and glamour, and leaves their low-end edifice starkly exposed."
"If Megan Abbott writes half a dozen more books as good as her first three (Die a Little and The Song Is You are period-piece perfection), she will claim the throne as the finest prose stylist in crime fiction since Raymond Chandler. This novella, a distinctly distaff homage to the lurid glories of 1950s paperbacks, is a splendidly simple but extravagantly sensual noir coming-of-age story about a young woman's dangerous apprenticeship to a female gangster. Imagine Hayley Mills possessed by Jim Thompson."
"Acts of stunning brutality, all retold in the narrator's hipster voice, reveal the ugliness behind the glitz as a little girl grows up. Abbott produces another stunning, hardboiled heroine."
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication: June 2007
Trade paperback, eBook
Read the story from which Queenpin derives in Damn Near Dead, the Edgar®-nominated anthology.