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Extended Audio Sample Chasing the Devil’s Tail: A Mystery of Storyville, New Orleans, by David Fulmer Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (339 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: David Fulmer Narrator: Dion Graha Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Valentin St. Cyr Mysteries Release Date:
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In the raucous, bloody, red-light district of Storyville, New Orleans, in 1907, where two thousand scarlet women practice their trade in grand mansions and filthy dime-a-trick cribs, where cocaine and opium are sold over the counter, and where rye whiskey flows like an amber river, there’s a killer loose. Someone is murdering Storyville prostitutes and marking each killing with a black rose.

As Creole detective Valentin St. Cyr begins to investigate, he encounters a cast of characters drawn from history: Tom Anderson, the political boss who runs Storyville like a private kingdom; Lulu White, the district’s most notorious madam; a young piano player who would come to be known as Jelly Roll Morton; and Buddy Bolden, the man who all but invented jazz and is now losing his mind.

No ordinary mystery, Chasing the Devil's Tail is a chilling portrait of musical genius and self-destruction, set at the moment when jazz was born.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “An exotic and erotic mixture of things we like—jazz, pimps, prostitutes, murder, and dirty politics.”

    Nelson DeMille, New York Times bestselling author

  • “In the tradition of The Alienist, Chasing the Devil’s Tail gives us top-notch suspense fiction in a delightfully evocative, and harrowing, time and place: in this case, New Orleans’ Storyville at the beginning of the twentieth century. We immediately fall under author Fulmer’s spell and are soon roaming the authentic haunts of that neighborhood in the company of his characters—some good and some not so, but all wonderfully colorful and as reall as the blues.”

    Jeffery Deaver, New York Times bestselling author

  • “A beautifully constructed, elegantly presented time trip to a New Orleans of the very early 1900s.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • “Captures Storyville in all its creative, mystical, and sordid excess.”

    Atlanta Journal-Constitution

  • “A wonderful rendition of a particular world at a very distinctive time.”


  • “Debut novelist David Fulmer has created an amazing story, and he makes it look easy.”

    Cleveland Plain Dealer

  • “[A] riveting and provocative debut mystery of sex, alcohol, drugs, insanity and murder…Fulmer’s use of historical figures…authenticate[s] an already believable and spellbinding story, which will echo in the reader’s mind like the mournful notes of good blues.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “Dion Graham is a masterful narrator. His clear, crisp voice shifts seamlessly from the storyteller to the myriad characters who populate this fascinating story…The story is energized by a compelling narration, which propels listeners into this sordid slice of American history.”


  • “A fine beginning to what looks like a first-rate historical series.”


  • “America, as Whitman recognized with his ever-changing editions of Leaves of Grass, and as early New Orleans musicians beating out red-hot jazz on the anvil of that odd timeless place knew, has never been about being, but about becoming. Our daily lives are mysteries because they’re forever moving away from us. David Fulmer seems to know that, too, and provides in Chasing the Devil’s Tail a mirror to help us keep oriented in this rush forward. I could almost taste fried shrimp and smell the sweetness of magnolia blossoms, almost hear Buddy Bolden’s cornet calling to us across the hot evening.”

    James Sallis, author of Drive and the Lew Griffin mysteries

  • Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award
  • Winner of the 2002 Shamus Award for Best First P.I. Novel
  • A 2002 Barry Award Nominee for Best First Novel
  • A 2001 Los Angeles Times Book Prize Nominee for Mystery/Thriller

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Ginny | 2/19/2014

    " What a wonderful tale of mystery. The setting is 1907 New Orleans and the background jazz music whispers through the pages while this tale of mystery unfolds slowly with such a surprise ending it had me guessing "whodunit" up to the very end. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Lindsay | 2/11/2014

    " Although not a page turner, I still enjoyed this book. I think I more enjoyed learning about the culture and history of NOLA in the 1900's and have even heard Buddy Bolden's name mentioned at a jazz concert! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Barb | 2/3/2014

    " i struggled between 3 1/2 stars and 4 with this story. went to 4 cause i read the second half in one sitting to find the black rose killer- plot kept my interest. loved the characters, esp tino and justine, lots of subplots, lots of odd relationships. the setting is the city of new orleans in the 1900s and practically becomes the strongest character. great facts re:beginning of jazz (you can almost hear the music), the racial class distinctions, voodoo and hoodoo. well done. will definitely read fulmer's other books set in storyville. NOTE: do you know how jelly roll morton got his name? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Dina Rock | 1/24/2014

    " This is a particularly great read for those of us who love that hot, sticky, nasty, stink of New Orleans after a long night of libation and soul pounding horns...It takes place in the early 1900's, along side the birth of jazz, but it still evokes that feelings of New Orlenas today in all its crazy glory. "

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