Sugar Skull

The body count this weekend is twenty-eight—and rising fast. Across the city, people are killing each other in gruesome ways. And Eve Diamond is writing it all down—in her routine murder roundup story for The Los Angeles Times. Then a distraught man bursts into the newsroom complaining about the police's apathy over the disappearance of his chronic runaway daughter. To complicate matters, Eve is assigned to cover a potentially huge story involving a mayoral candidate and his Italian wife Venus—whose body was discovered floating naked in their hillside villa pool.

Who killed Venus? And what is the significance of the sugar skulls—little confections for the Mexican Day of the Dead holiday—that Eve keeps seeing everywhere? As Eve unravels the mystery, she finds herself plunging into an overpowering love affair with Silvio Aguilar, the brooding scion of a music-industry titan. What is Silvio hiding? Against the backdrop of the mayoral election and the hallucinatory Day of the Dead celebrations, Eve tries to understand how vice, greed and the drive for power can transcend even the most entrenched of racial and class divides. With her own life ultimately on the line, Eve must beat incredible odds to stave off devastation—and derail the murder conviction of the wrong person. 

Hardcover, Scribner, March 2003, ISBN-13: 978-0743245395
Paperback, Pocket Star, February 2004, ISBN-13: 978-0743482219