Information about the author.
For feisty Los Angeles crime reporter Molly Blume, life is good. She is newly married (to the adoring and adorable Rabbi Zack), and her latest true-crime book is a hot seller. However, when an overardent fan’s attentions arouse Molly’s suspicion, her thoughts turn uneasily to stalkers.
But the fan, Reuben Jastrow, swears that he desperately needs Molly’s help in finding his eighteen-year-old daughter, Hadassah, who has run away from home to be with a man she met on the Internet. Molly hesitantly agrees–and immediately has regrets. For Reuben hasn’t told her the whole truth. The more Molly looks for clues to the missing girl’s fate, the more she wonders: Is Hadassah a random victim of a predator, or is the girl a pawn in a scheme of revenge against her family?
It’s a long, deadly path that stretches before Molly, a path mined with hidden passions and festering secrets. And it ends with a final twist and an unnerving truth: What we don’t see can lead to danger…and tragedy.
Friday, October 31. 9:37 P.M., 100 block of South Martel. A vandal threw a pumpkin through the front window of a house and several eggs at the front door.
The police report read like just another Halloween prank–a nasty, petty act. But the attack is one in a recent spate of increasingly violent vandalisms targeting residents who have paid millions of dollars for their dream homes in the ritziest enclaves of Los Angeles.
Residents are already seething, hotly divided about the growing number of Historical Architectural Restoration and Preservation (HARP) boards that prevent homeowners from remodeling their expensive real estate, forcing them to preserve the traditional integrity of neighborhoods where Hollywood legends once lived. So impassioned are pro-and anti-HARP forces that Crime Sheet columnist…[more]
Sunday, July 13. 1:46 A.M. Near Lookout Mountain and Laurel Canyon. An unidentified woman in her twenties, wearing a nightgown, was the victim of a hit-and-run accident that left her unconscious and seriously injured. There were no witnesses.
So reads the report on the accident off Mulholland Drive in Molly Blume’s Crime Sheet column for a weekly Los Angeles tabloid. Just another small L.A. tragedy, soon forgotten.
But the image of the young woman in her nightgown stumbling along a dark, winding road is one Molly, a freelance true-crime writer, cannot shake. In fact, it draws her to a bedside in intensive care, where the victim whispers to her three names: Robbie, Max, and Nina. It’s not a smoking gun, but is sufficient to reinforce Molly’s gut instinct that there are sinister circumstances behind the assault on Lenore Saunders. …[more]
One of the “top ten women who write superior crime fiction” (Charles Champlin, mystery reviewer for the Los Angeles Times), Rochelle Krich propels her exceptional sleuth, LAPD homicide detective Jessie Drake, into a deadly maze of rage, revenge, and moral complexities in what is the award-winning author’s most gripping and provocative novel to date.
At first glance it appears to be a random multiple murder—a prominent plastic surgeon and his nurse and receptionist shot dead in their plush Century City office. But to Jessie Drake, the savage nature of Dr. Ronald Bushnell’s fatal wounds suggests a crime of intense passion…and bitter retribution.Following her suspicions, the conscience-driven detective takes her investigation to the core of the seemingly harmonious family life of the slain surgeon. On the surface, Bushnell had everything: respect, money, a palatial home, a loving wife and daughter. But there is a joker in the deck, Bushnell’s foster son, Ethan Meissner—a…[more]
Murder is always heinous, but when two Los Angeles women attorneys are found dead with their tongues cut out, it’s downright gruesome. And for criminal defense attorney Debra Laslow the killings are even more horrifying…because she’s suspected of doing them. The daughter of an Orthodox rabbi, Debra treads a fine line between her moral beliefs and the dictates of the law. Often she consults with her father about any possible conflicts between her job and her religion, and the Talmud usually provides an interesting, if not always easy, answer. Now Debra’s defending a doctor accused of date rape by his receptionist. Although Debra believes the doctor’s innocent, the young woman she will cross-examine—and possibly humiliate in open court—belongs to her close-knit Orthodox community. She may even ruin the woman’s chances of marriage. And if the doctor is guilty and Debra wins the case, she’ll be responsible for an even crueler injustice.
Some things are uglier than homicide—and ultimately as dangerous. For Barry Lewis, a Los Angeles attorney famous for handling controversial cases, danger comes in the form of a note on his front door: “The Angel of Death spared your forefathers—will he spare you?” To LAPD detective Jessie Drake, the message is as ominous as the red paint smeared across Lewis’s doorposts and the Star of David scrawled across his door. Is this threat intended only for Lewis, or for the entire Jewish community?
Lewis, Jessie soon learns, is everyone’s enemy. Especially now that he’s representing a group of neo-Nazis, Holocaust deniers, and skinheads who want to parade through two predominantly Jewish neighborhoods on Hitler’s birthday. The Jewish community, enraged, is preparing for a confrontation. Lewis—who is the son of Holocaust survivors and does not sympathize with any hate groups—is determined to defend his clients’ First Amendment rights. But at what cost? How will the police maintain public…[more]
“No cause for alarm”, says Detective Jessie Drake on the evening news. “Be alert and wary of unfamiliar faces, lock your doors. We have several leads..”. But as the newly appointed departmental spokesperson, Jessie knows full well that there are no leads. At least no sane leads. Just insane clues, left by a serial killer who is as playfully clever as he is cunningly dangerous. Five victims have been murdered thus far. Five different neighborhoods. The only link between them is the cause of death: each died by a lethal injection of curare. The police are stymied. Not since Spider Woman has anybody used curare, blow dart poison, as a murder weapon of choice. As the odd and mystifyingly obscure clues mount, something begins to click in Jessie’s mind. Why do some of the bodies have bank deposit slips and money attached to them while one bears a parking ticket, of all things? Jessie can’t quite put her finger on the connection. It’s something from her childhood, something so familiar….Suddenly, Jessie figures it out, and she is stunned by the killer’s twisted brilliance: the game he is playing is all too real. The gameboard is the city of Los Angeles and the winner claims his prize in blood.