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The Cedric Files-bookcover

By: Stephen L. Purdy

The Cedric Files

Pages: 382 Ratings: 5.0
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It was only a teeny tiny mistake, after all, that first propelled our immigrant hero, then seven years old, and his family to America in 1888. But was it that same “slip-up” that would soon kill his father, and was its shadow destined to follow Boris and undermine any success – in life and love – for the rest of his life?Thus, in a tale that spans that escape from European confinement of Jews to not long after Boris’ death, we are caught up in his triumphs and reversals. From the misfortune that accompanies his Hartford hotel’s celebratory 1916 opening, through war and pandemic, economic ravage and social upheaval, rumors only fuel the regular recurrence of a “curse.”Among the wide range of characters interacting with Boris and this question: another precocious enterpriser and politician; a jealous one-time supervisor; his forbidden lover and mother to illegitimate son, who himself will “transgress”; and his granddaughter, a beautiful if questionably talented actress.Throughout, there’s Cedric, Boris’ invaluable assistant and still hotel concierge. Now at 77, does his stumble onto old attic files help him resolve his boss’ contradictory legacy? And what about the last-minute twist, the one that threatens his own imminent retirement?

With Stephen L. Purdy’s short fiction having appeared in The Hog River Review, Blueboy, Erotic Fiction Quarterly and Invert, his news stories have been published in The Hartford Advocate, The Hartford Courant, Connecticut Magazine and The New York Times. He has also worked in editing or copywriting for Xerox Education Publications and the book distributor H.P. Kopplemann. The Cedric Files is his first novel.

Customer Reviews
4 reviews
4 reviews
  • Sue Tyler, Manchester, Connecticut, retired teacher Manchester High School (Jan 6, 2024)

    “I loved the Hartford locale, the time period, the local hoi polloi and gentility, and especially the immigrants and how their individual interactions and generations came together at the end. The novel was a page turner for me.”

  • Karen Heroy, Mount Holly, NC, retired communications professional, one of whose jobs was for Hartford architect Tai Soo Kim (March 8, 2024)

    As a work of fiction, you beautifully craft realism and possibility: actual people who lived in the various time periods with actions they might take. I relished the familiar characters of Herman Kopplemann, Mark Twain and Chick Austin. I enjoyed the inference of the controversial artist and project, aka Carl Andre. However, it is not necessary for readers to have these references to Hartford; it all flows to create this engaging saga. “The Cedric Files is a compelling tale sweeping over generations, full full of empathy and insight about the refugees who settled Hartford; a microcosm of those who settled throughout the “new world.” You do a great job of capturing and portraying the feelings of your characters through their dialogue and actions. “… I felt that I knew these people, whether deploring them or caring about them and cheering on their exploits. I felt swept along with intrigue and interest, sadness and joy, and wanted to know what happened next! “… [an] enchanting, stirring and engaging tale of humanity!”

  • Helen I. Bennett, Executive Editor, The Hartford Courant (Jan. 28, 2024)

    Sounds like a great book!

  • Diana Martens, artist/sculptor, Cincinnati, OH (Dec., 2023)

    “I loved it! Felt as if I was there, moving on those Hartford streets.”

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