Dream A Little Death
by Susan Kandel
on Tour May 23 - June 23, 2017
From critically acclaimed author Susan Kandel comes a charming new mystery featuring Dreama Black and a cast of zany LA-based characters.The first time I set eyes on Miles McCoy, I worried he might try to eat me. He was the size and girth of a North American grizzly, with long, silver-tipped hair, a long silver-tipped beard, and small dark eyes that bore into me like I was a particularly fine specimen of Chinook salmon. It couldn't have helped that I'd used a honey scrub the morning we met. I should've known better. Not just about the scrub, but about a lot of things.
Like braving the freeway during rush hour.
Like thinking you can't get a ticket for parking at a broken meter.
Like racing up to his penthouse in gladiator sandals, and expecting not to twist an ankle.
Like watching his fiancée shoot herself, and assuming it was suicide, instead of murder.
Meet Dreama Black. A 28 year-old, third-generation groupie trying to figure out who she is after being publicly dumped by the rock god whose mega-hit, "Dreama, Little Dreama" made the name and the girl world-famous. Now Dreama supports herself by running custom-designed, themed tours of her hometown of L.A. When she is hired by a Raymond Chandler-obsessed rap producer to create a "L.A. noir" tour as his present to his soon-to-be bride, Dreama gets pulled into the middle of a possible murder, corrupt cops, and an unforgettable pair of femme fatales.
I enjoyed this mystery and the journey through the film noir of Los Angeles. Dreama is a well crafted character. I like how she accidentally gets caught up in a possible murder investigation and pursues the truth in her own bumbling way. Many of the characters lie to Dreama so she has to uncover layers of deceit. Her amateur investigation takes readers through the shady part of Los Angeles, visiting sophisticated strip clubs and encountering a number of thugs.
There are many references in the book to film noir, including quotes from the movies and places where action was filmed. People who love that genre of the film industry will find that aspect of the plot very interesting.
I found the promiscuity in the novel disconcerting. While there were no graphic descriptions of sexual encounters, I didn't like the frequent casual sex and references to previous encounters, Dreama's mother and grandmother included.
I recommend this novel to readers who would like a complex plot involving layers of lies and deceit and who don't mind a romp through the seedier part of Los Angeles. You'll learn quite a bit about film noir along the way.
My rating: 4/5 stars.
Book Details:Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Published by: Witness Impulse
Publication Date: May 23rd 2017
Number of Pages: 304
ISBN: 0062674994 (ISBN13: 9780062674999)
Series: A Dreama Black Mystery, 1
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads
Read an excerpt:
Author Bio:An Agatha, Edgar, and SCIBA nominee, Susan Kandel is the author of the nationally best-selling and critically acclaimed Cece Caruso series, the most recent of which, Dial H for Hitchcock (Morrow), was named by NPR as one of the five best mysteries of the year. A Los Angeles native, she was trained as an art historian, taught at NYU and UCLA, and spent a decade as an art critic at the Los Angeles Times. When not writing, she volunteers as a court-appointed advocate for foster children, and loves to explore secret, forgotten, and kitschy L.A. She lives with her husband in West Hollywood.
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I received a complimentary egalley of this book through Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours. My comments are an independent and honest review.