The harlem Shuffle


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‘Ray Carney was only slightly bent when it came to being crooked…’
To his customers and neighbors on 125th street, Carney is an upstanding
salesman of reasonably-priced furniture, making a life for himself and
his family. He and his wife Elizabeth are expecting their second child,
and if her parents on Striver’s Row don’t approve of him or their
cramped apartment across from the subway tracks, it’s still home.

Few people know he descends from a line of uptown hoods and crooks, and
that his fa ade of normalcy has more than a few cracks in it. Cracks
that are getting bigger and bigger all the time.
See, cash is tight, especially with all those instalment plan sofas, so
if his cousin Freddie occasionally drops off the odd ring or necklace at
the furniture store, Ray doesn’t see the need to ask where it comes
from. He knows a discreet jeweller downtown who also doesn’t ask
Then Freddie falls in with a crew who plan to rob the Hotel Theresa –
the ‘Waldorf of Harlem’ – and volunteers Ray’s services as the fence.
The heist doesn’t go as planned; they rarely do, after all. Now Ray has
to cater to a new clientele, one made up of shady cops on the take,
vicious minions of the local crime lord, and numerous other Harlem

Thus begins the internal tussle between Ray the striver and Ray the
crook. As Ray navigates this double life, he starts to see the truth
about who actually pulls the strings in Harlem. Can Ray avoid getting
killed, save his cousin, and grab his share of the big score, all while
maintaining his reputation as the go-to source for all your quality home
furniture needs?
HARLEM SHUFFLE is driven by an ingeniously intricate plot that plays out
in a beautifully recreated Harlem of the early 1960s. It’s a family
saga masquerading as a crime novel, a hilarious morality play, a social
novel about race and power, and ultimately a love letter to Harlem.

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