The NYT Book Review called this book "a lush love letter to the underworld." Well...kinda sorta, yes and no. The book centers around the Everleigh Club in Chicago, a famous brothel run by two sisters, Minna and Ada Everleigh. They ran their brothel as a high class resort, turning away unsavory types at the door and had a waiting list of harlots wanting to work for them. The first half of the book is a good fun read, focusing in on the sisters, their past both real and made up, their clients and the girls they employed. The second half is more about the war against the houses of ill repute by the ministers, polititians (at least the ones who weren't getting paid on the side by the vice lords), and civic leaders.
Not that I have anything against Truth, Justice and the American Way...I just wish the book focused more on the sisters. They are true characters, adorning themselves with $100,000 worth of diamonds, driving around in a bright yellow car with a bouquet of fake flowers as a hood ornament, the way they decorated their brothel the author calls them "an early century cross between Martha Stewart and Madonna."
I'll bring this to the next meeting and put it up for grabs.