"A fun and feisty heroine" (Janet Evanovich, author of Lean Mean Thirteen) stars in another smart, suspenseful mystery from the Los Angeles Times bestselling author of Short Change.
To help her new chocolate shop flourish, gourmande Helen Taggart has hired Tucker Sinclair and Associates. (Tucker will admit that by "Associates," she means Eugene, an asthmatic young secretary and Dick Tracy wannabe.) Then one night, Tucker finds the shop open, truffles strewn across the floor--and the body of cleaning woman Lupe Ortiz lying next to a bloody green feather...
Death and chocolate in Beverly Hills sounds like a delicious way to die, but it's an unfortunate combo for Lupe Ortiz, a Latina cleaning lady, in Smiley's appealing fourth Tucker Sinclair sleuthfest (after 2007's Short Change). Tucker, a marketing expert, finds Lupe's body in the bathroom of Nectar, a new gourmet chocolate shop owned by a client of Tucker's. A quetzal feather left by the corpse, a signature of the MayaBoyz, points to Lupe's son Roberto, who belongs to the East L.A. gang, as the prime suspect. Doubtful of Roberto's guilt, Tucker asks her PI friend, Charley Tate, to investigate. Her overeager assistant, Eugene Barstok, also gets involved, but causes dismay when he disappears while undercover. Smiley fills this chocolate-enriched puzzler with touristy L.A. intel, while Tucker's no-nonsense first-person narration keeps the pages turning despite a predictable ending. (June)
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June 02, 2008
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