Official Review: Onlinebookclub.org:       4 out of 4 stars

This is the most excited that I have been about a book in a long time. When I first read the blurb for, The Big Exoneration by Dennis Sanchez, I felt that it would most likely be a book that I would enjoy reading. I came quickly to discover that it was much more than simply a good read. Soon after I began the book, I was completely taken in by the setting and characters that were so superbly crafted by the author. He did an amazing job of bringing the scenes to life in my imagination, making me feel as though I was truly alongside the characters inside the settings he described. I cannot remember the last time I read a book so fast and found myself so sad to see it come to an end.  


In a modern twist of noir private detective mysteries, a middle school boy and his younger sister travel in time between the present and 1939 Los Angeles while investigating a  crime that sent an innocent man to the gas chamber.
After discovering a skeleton key to an office in a century-old building in downtown Los Angele,  they enter only to be transported back in time to the year 1939.  Here they find the ghost of  Archer Wolfe trapped in a picture frame.  Wolfe tells them he was condemned and executed for a murder he didn't commit. Hoping the kids can exonerate him, he sends them off to roam 1939 Los Angeles for the real murderer.  The kids, dressed in the fashions of 1939, oddly passed themselves off successfully as '30s private dicks to a motley crew of mobsters and molls.
However, there is a ticking clock element. The kids have only one week to uncover the murderer, get his written confession, and return with it to modern day before Wolfe’s ghost vanishes forever.
From its title to its period slang and references, this novel is a literary feast for fans of hardboiled fiction and the mystery is a clever homage to Hammett and Chandler. Those who know L.A. will appreciate the shout-outs to Coles, the Fred Harvey House at Union Station, the Aztec Hotel on Route 66, and other local landmarks.

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