Carmen Amato is a retired Central Intelligence Agency intelligence officer using 30 years worth of counterdrug and espionage experience to craft intrigue-filled crime fiction, including the Detective Emilia Cruz police series set in Acapulco. 

A recipient of both the National Intelligence Award and the Career Intelligence Medal, Carmen is also a survivor of three earthquakes, a train derailment, and a scuba diving encounter with a lionfish.  MORE

“A thrilling series.”  NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO



Detective Emilia Cruz Book 7

The Russians have come to play in Acapulco, but murder isn't far behind.

When a Russian guest is murdered in the luxury hotel managed by Kurt Rucker, Emilia's homecoming takes an unexpected turn. 

Can Acapulco's first female police detective give Russia a dose of Mexican justice?

This cocktail of a crime thriller is Detective Emilia Cruz's most complex case yet.



Go behind the books with exclusive excerpts, announcements, and what to read now.


Current projects


  • NARCO NOIR: Detective Emilia Cruz Book 8 15% 15%
  • HURRICANE EMILIA: Detective Emilia Cruz Book 9 5% 5%

From the blog

The road between the storms

Storm vs lull = successThe storm called RUSSIAN MOJITO has ended. The lull has arrived, allowing me to catch my breath and attend to all the housekeeping chores that built up while my brain was whirling with MOJITO. The modern do-it-yourself author has a...

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Writing a mystery: 3 essential questions

RUSSIAN MOJITO, Detective Emilia Cruz Book 7, will be released on 6 June. It is undoubtedly the most complex mystery I've ever written. Emilia's whole future is on the line. Mystery writing: the big start Every Emilia Cruz novel has multiple plot lines. My...

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“Danger and betrayal never more than a few pages away.”  KIRKUS REVIEWS

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