Savage Garden

Nationally bestselling and critically acclaimed author Denise Hamilton returns with a new Eve Diamond novel that courses through L.A.'s vibrant theater community and confirms her reputation for sexy, sophisticated crime writing with an urban edge. 

L.A. Times reporter Eve Diamond has been looking forward to a romantic date with her new love, Silvio Aguilar, for quite some time. She envisions opening night at the theater, cocktails, and then a sultry evening to catch up on all they've been missing. But when the play's beautiful and notoriously unstable lead actress, Catarina Velosi, fails to appear, Eve learns that Silvio and the missing woman share a complicated past. And his friend, gangbanger-turned-playwright Alfonso Reventon, may know more than he lets on when he dispatches Silvio to Catarina's Echo Park bungalow to check up on his leading lady. 

A messy scene indicates that Catarina could have been abducted—or worse—and when it becomes clear that Silvio is no stranger to the actress's home, or her bed, Eve must stifle her own feelings of betrayal and fight to clear his name. She knows Silvio is innocent...or does she? 

Summoning her journalist's skills and steeling herself for further revelations, Eve methodically approaches the players in Catarina's personal tragedy, including Alfonso, the actress's sometime lover and director, and the high-strung and evasive Marisela Reventon, Alfonso's jealous wife. An enigmatic drama instructor, a powerful movie mogul, and a lecherous political yes-man round out the intriguing cast. Is one of them hiding something that might lead Eve to the truth? And who is responsible for attacking her in a darkened street and threatening her life? 

To complicate matters, Eve's been assigned to mentor young African-American reporter Felice Morgan, who insinuates herself into the case at every turn. Felice's overeager boasting on the job escalates into outright lies, testing Eve's conscience as a reporter and a friend. As Eve begins to suspect Felice of unethical journalism, she navigates a treacherous landscape in both her professional and personal life. From the barrio to the newsroom, nothing—and no one—can be taken at face value in this intoxicating tale of scandal, murder, and revenge. 

The Washington Times says "Hamilton writes like the pro she is," and with Savage Garden, her star is on the rise. Frequently compared to Raymond Chandler and his classic detective Philip Marlowe, but with a sleek, modern veneer, Denise Hamilton and Eve Diamond have cut a groundbreaking swath through the streets of ethnically and culturally diverse Los Angeles, revealing the glory and the corruption of their beloved hometown. 

Hardcover, Scribner, April 2005, ISBN-13: 978-0743261920
Paperback, Pocket Star, February 2006, ISBN-13: 978-0743492713