It is anything but a typical day on the job for a seasoned reporter when two sensational cases grip Los Angeles in this debut thriller.
During the summer of 1951, a series of four attacks on the streets of Los Angeles leaves six men dead. The victims are not random and the killer is not a deranged maniac; rather, a well-dressed blonde woman rescues innocent citizens by slaying their assailants. For Jack Curran, a reporter for the tabloid the Eyes of LA, the case is more than a hot story; it is an obsession. He gives her the nickname Thrill Girl and tracks her every move, determined to uncover her identity. His probe leads him to Alana Maxwell, a beautiful heiress caring for her partially paralyzed brother, Tomas. An attraction quickly develops between Jack and Alana as he seeks to connect her to the Thrill Girl cases. When a gruesome murder leaves residents fearful, Jack initially believes people are overreacting to an animal attack. As he delves deeper into Alana’s family, a series of shocking discoveries upends everything he thought he knew about Thrill Girl, and he wonders whether there is a connection between the two investigations. Author Curran delivers an arresting mystery and love story wrapped in an irresistible noir whose twists continue to the final page. He is particularly adept at creating dynamic and well-developed characters who provide a solid foundation for the propulsive narrative even in its most outlandish parts. The tale’s hero, Jack, a World War II veteran–turned–journalist and aspiring screenwriter, is an effective protagonist who employs some unorthodox tactics in his pursuit of Thrill Girl. He meets his match in Alana, whose guilt over her brother’s condition sends her on a spiritual quest and leads to some of the most poignant moments in the book. Setting is an important aspect of the story, and the author’s depiction of postwar Los Angeles pops with vivid details, from the lavish nightclubs and residences to the daily news cycle of the Eyes of LA.
A well-crafted tale that, like Thrill Girl herself, is full of intrigue.