August Snow

by Stephen Mack Jones

August Octavio Snow, formerly a detective sergeant with the Detroit Police Department, is finding that even a $12 million settlement for wrongful termination isn’t compensation enough for the loss of a job he loved.

But on the city payroll or off, he’s the best there is in the eyes of wealthy Eleanor Paget, former head of Titan Securities Investment Bank.

She demands his prompt appearance at her home to help her deal with suspicious activities at the bank she ran for 32 years. A day after Snow declines to help her, Mrs. Paget is dead.

Author Stephen Mack Jones’ introduction of Snow is a fresh perspective on the traditional detective story. His story is infused with Snow’s — and Jones’ — love of Detroit.

Born to an African-American police officer and a Mexican mother, Snow lives in Detroit’s Mexicantown in the house he grew up in.  But with his settlement money, he has the means to bring his family’s house back to life, even buying and renovating seven other houses on Markham Street, turning it into a safe, neighborly place to live.

Snow is part private investigator, part white knight, part avenging angel and part community builder. His efforts to learn who killed Mrs. Paget and to protect her artist daughter Vivian and Vivian’s wife Colleen quickly lands him in the middle of an international money laundering scheme that the FBI is intensely interested in.

Jones’ has a gift for creating enjoyable characters and a vivid sense of place. Once you’ve read this book, you’ll be hungry for more of Snow’s adventures in its sequels, LIVES LAID AWAY (2019) and DEAD OF WINTER (2021).

About the Author: Stephen Mack Jones (1955 – )

Born in in Lansing, MI, Stephen Mack Jones is a published poet, award-winning playwright and recipient of the prestigious Kresge Arts in Detroit Literary Fellowship.

LIVES LAID AWAY was short-listed for the Crime Writers Association, United Kingdom, Ian Flemming Steel Dagger Award.

He describes his effort to bring Detroit to life for readers as “both recollection and investigation.  It was memories and experiences balanced with research.” He added that he is drawn in by books that make “you see how towns, villages and cities become characters with their own distinct rhythms and color palettes.”

Jones’ father worked at GM’s Oldsmobile plant for nearly 40 years, but wanted his sons to have better careers. Jones grew up in Detroit and currently lives in suburban Detroit.

He spent more than 30 years in a “day job” working in advertising and marketing communications for agencies such as Young & Rubicam, McCann-Erickson, Winderman and several corporations. In addition to his novels, he wrote two produced stage plays


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