An Ostentation is loosely based on my mother's side of the family—the Peacocks. It is set in Chicago during the 19th and well into the 20th century when Chicago was a battleground for conflicts between classes. Each wave of immigrants enlarged its population, provided more workers for its growing industries, and provoked new fights and prejudices among its citizens. The city became a leading center of labor activism.
My second novel involves some of the issues that I was exposed to while growing up. Even though I only lived on the cranberry bog a fourth of the year, when I was in Chicago, I felt like a poor country mouse surrounded by my affluent city-mice relatives. For four generations the Peacocks owned the elegant jewelry store—C D Peacock.
In the story, the Peacock family struggles with some of the same issues as the city. When a relative’s murder is uncovered, family members are conflicted. If the culprit is revealed, it might lead to serious consequences to the family’s reputation. In jewelry retail show is everything.
The word "ostentation" in bird parlance is the collective for a group of Peacocks. Shown below are the entrance doors to the Chicago jewelry store, C D Peacock.
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