A tough San Francisco reporter investigates the death of a former lover.
Dixie Flynn is on the scene shortly after the death of artist Diego Chino. A carefully arranged signed canvas that uses his blood and other body materials to depict rage and despair paints a lurid portrait of a suicide. In the fickle world of art, Diego had been a hot seller, but lately he had been overtaken by an artist known as Adamsky. Although Dixie suspects murder, her father-figure friend DS Frank Fury isn’t persuaded, and the case is quickly shut down by the highest reaches of the police department. Meanwhile, a man representing the wealthy collector Sir Roger Kingston shows up before the blood has dried on the canvas, claiming Chino had texted him with instructions on where and when to find Chino’s posthumous work. Even after the investigation is closed, Dixie, still certain that Chino was murdered, takes the fact that she is harassed and almost run over in a Chinatown alley as confirmation of her suspicions. Can she find the truth before she’s killed by whoever is determined to keep the case closed?
Under a sort-of-pseudonym, thriller writer Grant McKenzie (No Cry For Help, 2010, etc.) offers the first of a planned series featuring wisecracking Dixie, with a fast-paced combination of violence and sex and a game-changing twist at the end.