Jimmy Dean, bit part actor, befriends famed actress Marilyn Monroe. When Marilyn is found dead in her LA home, the ruling is suicide, but Jimmy thinks otherwise. As he starts digging, he comes up against those who wish to stop him from uncovering the truth. Realising that he’s in over his head, Jimmy calls former business partner, Mississippi truck driver, Elvis Presley. As Jimmy and Elvis begin to search deeper, they uncover a potential link between Marilyn’s death and the highest office in the land.
Jimmy Dean’s Last Dance is an alt-history Noir Detective novel in the tradition of The Big Sleep and Chinatown.
I received a free copy of this book courtesy of the author in exchange for an honest review.
Jimmy Dean’s Last Dance is a thriller with a twist. A noir story set in early-1960’s America, the narrative charts an alternate history for some of the biggest names of the time. Imagine a world where Elvis Presley is a truck driver hauling big rigs across the country. Where Jimmy Dean is a bit-part aspiring actor struggling to make a break. Where Marilyn Monroe’s fame is on the wane. In an alternative timeline, all things are possible, so when Jimmy learns of the apparent suicide of his friend Monroe, he descends down a rabbit hole of conspiracy and conjecture.
Sneaking back into her home, Jimmy Dean discovers a little black book with some pretty-recognisable initials in it. Those of President Kennedy. Just the bare notes of a call with JK, an appointment scheduled just before her untimely death. What did he have to do with her death? His mind racing at a million miles an hour, Jimmy rushes headlong into a mission to uncover who is responsible for her death. A frenzied phone call to acquaintance Elvis sets them on a collision course with a mafia boss the pair have crossed in their past, the CIA, the NSA, Lee Harvey Oswald and the President himself.
Jimmy Dean’s Last Dance presents a fascinating spin on such a well-documented snapshot of American, and world, history. It deals with two major events, both surrounded by the mists of suspicion and conspiracy, something that Alliss pounces on. He wrangles these conspiracies into a compelling story. The characters are flawed, real and at times relatable. They exude raw emotion in every interaction, reaction and action they take. All of this makes for a pacey, dark novel spotted with gallows humour that makes for a compelling, thoroughly enjoyable read.