The Pike Boys
The Pike Boys
It's 1920 New Orleans and Jesse Pike is slowly ascending the New Orleans upper-class social scene. He's the owner of the most popular brothel in the entire city, and rubs shoulders with businessmen, corrupt politicians, and stage stars alike. He's also the leader of a violent street gang that pulls off the biggest heist of liquor since the beginning of prohibition. Jesse sets up a scheme to sell the booze, and use the profits to help him start a legitimate business. However, several obstacles get in his way: Clyde, the mentally disturbed oldest Pike sibling, is released from prison and takes issue with how Jesse runs things; Jesse's aging mentor refuses to let him leave behind crime; and an overzealous young DA decides to reopen an investigation into the liquor heist to increase his chances of being elected mayor. Jesse is forced to make a decision: does he walk away from a life of crime and his family forever? Or will he continue down the road of violence that has begun to erode his psyche, much as it has Clyde's?
The Pike Boys, according to a reviewer, is a "compelling story of the Pike family's struggles against poverty, violence, substance abuse, mental illness, and their quest to rise above it all while living in the crime-ridden New Orleans of the gangster era." It has all the thrills, plot twists, and quick pace of conventional gangster fiction, with the heart, depth, and nuance of a literary novel. In between the shootouts, violence, and debauchery, there is the overarching question of "can people actually change?" The reader will see that the answer is not so simple-especially when you live in a place like New Orleans.