Rushmore McKenzie, a retired St. Paul policeman and unexpected millionaire, often works as an unlicensed P.I., doing favors as it suits him. When graduate students Ivy Flynn and Josh Berglund show up with a story about $8 million in missing stolen gold from the ‘30s, McKenzie is intrigued.
In the early 20th century, St. Paul, Minnesota was an open city —a place where gangsters could come and stay unmolested by the local authorities. Frank "Jelly" Nash was suspected of masterminding a daring robbery of gold bars in 1933, but, before he could unload it, he was killed in the Kansas City Massacre. His gold, they believe, is still somewhere in St. Paul.
But they aren't the only ones looking. So are a couple of two-bit thugs, a woman named Heavenly, a local big-wig, and others. When Berglund is shot dead outside of Ivy's apartment, the treasure hunt turns unexpectedly deadly. In this hard-boiled mystery from David Housewright, Mac McKenzie is looking for more than a legendary stash from seventy-five years ago---he's looking for a killer and the long hidden truth behind Jelly's gold.
In Edgar-winner Housewright's enjoyable sixth novel to feature PI Rushmore Mac McKenzie (after 2008's Madman on a Drum), graduate student Ivy Flynn, last seen in 2005's Tin City, and her new boyfriend believe gold from a 1933 bank robbery engineered by Frank Jelly Nash is still hidden somewhere in St. Paul, Minn. When Mac agrees to investigate, it becomes apparent others are after the same pot of gold, now worth at least $8 million. The searchers consult historical archives and private letters, interview descendants of crooks and bigwigs, and even manage to locate one ancient ex-con who knew Nash. Readers get a dual treat as the likable Mac deals with a parade of present-day sharpies and gold hunters, while Housewright retells the story of the wholesale corruption that for decades made St. Paul a playground for a who's who of gangsters, including John Dillinger, Baby Face Nelson and others who hobnobbed with St. Paul's upper crust.