The Killing of the Saints

Alex Abella, Author Crown Publishing Group (NY) $19 (0p) ISBN 978-0-517-58509-2
A splendid ethnic setting, the Cuban section of Los Angeles, enriches this atmospheric thriller, which is augmented by Hispanic expressions, scenes of witchcraft and courtroom procedures. Court-appointed investigator Charlie Morell is assigned the case of Cuban refugee Ramon Valdez, accused of killing hostages during a jewelry store heist. Valdez claims that one of the gods of his voodoo-like religion, Santeria , compelled him to commit the murders. His search for leads and witnesses forces the Cuban-American Morell to examine why, as a young man, he left his parents and, later, his wife and child. He succumbs to the charms of beautiful Lucinda, an ``acquaintance'' of Valdez. Acting as his own attorney, Valdez is declared incompetent by the court and Morell, who once practiced law in Miami, is reassigned as his counsel. A miscarriage of justice leads to a confrontation involving Valdez, Lucinda and Morell, which makes for exciting reading. The unabashedly theatrical ending is a bit excessive, but will leave readers shaken. Film rights optioned by Paramount. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 07/29/1991
Release date: 08/01/1991
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-0-14-017419-9
Hardcover - 978-0-517-11670-8
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