Utopia Falls is a mystery written by Byrne Fone, known to many in Hudson as the author of Historic Hudson: An Architectural Portrait. The book is set in a fictionalized Hudson, in the first decade of the 21st century. The main character, Jeremy Hudson settled in Utopia Falls after living in New York City. The following description appears on the book's back cover:
When Jeremy Hudson leaves New York and comes to Utopia Falls in search of a refuge, he hopes to revive a failing writing career. But instead of completing the novel he needs to finish, he becomes fascinated by the history of the city everyone calls "The Falls." He soon finds himself embroiled in the age-old animosities that have long divided the city, that are violently intensified by three spectacular murders. As Jeremy pursues his research into the city's history, he uncovers a series of grim and murderous events from the past that parallel in method and brutality the recent shocking crimes. It is obvious that someone has discovered the same grim events from another time and whoever made that discovery must also be the murderer, and Jeremy Hudson must discover who it is.Fone expatriated to France, with his husband, Alain Pioton, in 2008, so he is unlikely to appreciate fully the irony of his fictionalized Hudson sharing its familiar name, "The Falls," with the massive apartment complex and event venue on Route 66 in Greenport.
Having read an early version of the first installments, I can attest that what makes the book most entertaining and engaging for us Hudsonians is the challenge of matching the people and places of Utopia Falls with the people and places of Hudson. Intriguing, too, is the way Fone weaves the history of Utopia Falls, discovered by his protagonist in ancient newspapers and manuscripts in the rare book room of the local library and clearly inspired by Fone's own research for Historic Hudson, into this tale of grim and brutal murder. I've ordered my paperback copy from Amazon, and I'm looking forward to reading the revised and complete version of Utopia Falls: A Jeremy Hudson Mystery.
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