Lee Kelly 2017-09-07T04:49:02+00:00

Project Description

I REALLY struggle to referring to myself in the third person (Lee likes biking, Lee’s quite the cocktail connoisseur), so since this is a long bio, I hope you don’t mind if I switch this to first. I’ve wanted to write for as long as I can remember, but it wasn’t until law school that I got my act together started writing everyday. I wrote my first (rambling, incoherent, 130,000 word) novel during early mornings and weekends while I was working as an entertainment lawyer in Los Angeles. When I transferred to the New York office, I put that manuscript clunker in a drawer and started writing a different story. That story eventually became my first novel, City of Savages.

Since then, my family has moved to Millburn, New Jersey- but Manhattan will always hold a special place in my heart. As anyone who reads City of Savages will likely glean, I had quite a love-hate relationship with it.

Now, I spend my days toggling between writing and hanging out with my two-and-a-half year old Penn Joseph, a little wild-man who’s pretty much the best thing that’s ever happened to me. My husband (and best friend) Jeff and I spend our nights and weekends heading to our favorite restaurants and the local park with Penn, watching House of Cards and True Detective, and talking about working out…though sometimes we actually do get on our bikes.

I’m represented by the lovely and incomparable Adriann Ranta of Wolf Literary Services.


Magic is powerful, dangerous and addictive – and after passage of the 18th Amendment, it is finally illegal. It’s 1926 in Washington, DC, and while Anti-Sorcery activists have achieved the Prohibition of sorcery, the city’s magic underworld is booming. Sorcerers cast illusions to aid mobsters’ crime sprees. Smugglers funnel magic contraband in from overseas. Gangs have established secret performance venues where patrons can lose themselves in magic, and take a mind-bending, intoxicating elixir known as the sorcerer’s shine. Joan Kendrick, a young sorcerer from Norfolk County, Virginia accepts an offer to work for DC’s most notorious crime syndicate, the Shaw Gang, when her family’s home is repossessed. Alex Danfrey, a first-year Federal Prohibition Unit trainee with a complicated past and talents of his own, becomes tapped to go undercover and infiltrate the Shaws. Through different paths, Joan and Alex tread deep into the violent, dangerous world of criminal magic – and when their paths cross at the Shaws’ performance venue, despite their orders, and despite themselves, Joan and Alex become enchanted with one another. But when gang alliances begin to shift, the two sorcerers are forced to question their ultimate allegiances and motivations. And soon, Joan and Alex find themselves pitted against each other in a treacherous, heady game of cat-and-mouse. A CRIMINAL MAGIC casts a spell of magic, high stakes and intrigue against the backdrop of a very different Roaring Twenties.


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