In the gritty underbelly of 1920s Sydney, a fresh-faced country girl is about to arrive in the big, dark city – and risk everything in the pursuit of her dreams.
Sydney is no place for the fainthearted – five shillings for a twist of snow, a woman for not much more, and a bullet if you look sideways at the wrong person.
Dolly Bowman is ready and willing to take on all the brash, bustling city has to offer. After all it is the 1920s, a time for a girl to become a woman and fulfil her dreams. Turning her back on her childhood, she takes up a position working as a housemaid while she searches for her future.
World War I flying ace Jack Dalton knows he’s luckier than most. He’s survived the war with barely a scratch, a couple of astute business decisions have paid off, and he’s set for the high life.
But a glimpse of a girl that he had forgotten, from a place he’s tried to escape suddenly sets all his plans awry. Try as he might he can’t shake the past, and money isn’t enough to pay the debts he’s incurred.
What we thought:
Upon picking up Jazz Baby I was immediately struck by the 1920’s-themed cover: the typeface, colouration, and simplicity oozing art-deco inspiration which is of course very appropriate when thinking about 1920’s Sydney.
Tea Cooper has such a magical way with words that when reading Jazz Baby, you’re instantly transported to 1920’s Sydney. With ease, Cooper paints an enthralling picture of a seedy, almost heartlessly dangerous, Sydney and the associated challenges for women of the time.
Jazz Baby explores complex themes of social classing, post-war heartbreak and challenges, and gender inequality in a manner that exudes impeccable research and great tact. These topics are weaved seamlessly into the storyline making it them interesting and intrinsic aspects of the story.
I highly recommend Jazz Baby.
– J’aimee Brooker, AusRomToday