A Star is Dead
by Elaine Viets

Hollywood diva Jessica Gray is on the last leg of her one-woman show when she suffers a sudden and fatal illness . . . but Angela Richman thinks there’s more to it.

“Ageless” Hollywood diva Jessica Gray is finishing the last leg of her one-woman show in St Louis, Missouri, and the nearby town of Chouteau Forest is dazzled. During the show she humiliates three homeless women onstage, fires her entourage – not for the first time – and makes a bitter enemy of the town’s powerful patriarch.

After she collapses at an after-show party and is rushed to the hospital, she ignores the advice of her doctors and discharges herself in order to return to LA. On the way to the airport she suffers a deadly coughing fit. It was poison. When Angela Richman’s friend, Mario, is arrested for the murder and faces the death penalty, she is compelled to investigate.

With so many grudges held against the actress and Mario’s life on the line, the stakes are higher than ever.


Will satisfy both procedural and cozy fans who like a good puzzle


An intriguing mystery featuring a character in the little-known job of death investigator

Library Journal

Skillfully plotted … Witty dialogue and well-defined characters, including plucky and intelligent Angela, lift this wry look at the trappings of celebrity. Fans and newcomers alike will be pleased

Publishers Weekly

Viets brings readers a treat with a new series featuring coroner's investigator Angela Richman ... A compelling thriller that moves quickly and builds suspense steadily

Booklist on Brain Storm

An intriguing tale that will attract forensic mystery buffs and fans of Max Allan Collins's "CSI" tie-in series

Library Journal on Brain Storm

Well-paced, darkly humorous series launch

Publishers Weekly on Brain Storm

In Viets's snappy 14th Dead-End Job mystery ... Helen and Phil are as entertaining as they've ever been, and it's fun to revisit their neighbors at the Coronado Tropic Apartments

Publishers Weekly on Checked Out

Elaine Viets

Elaine Viets returns to her hardboiled roots with her Angela Richman, Death Investigator series. A Star Is Dead is the latest, following Fire and Ashes and Brain Storm, and the novella Ice Blonde. Elaine has 34 bestselling mysteries in four series, including the Dead-End Job mysteries and the Josie Marcus, Mystery Shopper series. A St Louis native, Elaine took the Medicolegal Death Investigator Training Course for forensic professionals at St Louis University. She has previously won the Agatha, Anthony and Lefty Awards. Elaine lives in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with her husband, writer and reviewer Don Crinklaw.

View author page


A Star is Dead by Elaine Viets is available in the following formats

Hardback978072789016031st December 2019145 X 223mm224£21.99
FormatISBNPublication DateDimensionsPagesPrice