How about a free trip to Acapulco?


The #FREE Detective Emilia Cruz Starter Library is your ticket to go.

3 volume Starter Library

Here’s what you get


The Beast

Previously published in The Huffington Post’s Fiction50 showcase, The Beast is the definitive prequel to the series.


The Angler

Based on the 2007 true murder of author Carmen Amato’s parish priest. His killer was never found, until now.


Who's Who

Profiles of all of the key characters, including Detective Emilia Cruz, hotel manager Kurt Rucker, senior detective Franco Silvio, and Acapulco mayor Carlota Montoya Perez.


“We’d be pleased to publish ‘The Beast’ . . . All of us here who read it were quite enamored of it.”

Alex Eichler, editor, Huffington Post Fiction50 Showcase

The Starter Library is delivered in 3 emails:

Day 1: The Beast, prequel to the series first published by The Huffington Post
Day 2: The Angler, exclusive to the Starter Library and based on the true life murder of my parish priest
Day 3: Who’s Who guide to the series you don’t find anywhere else

You can also download all 3 items as a single PDF from any of the emails.

Privacy policy: I don’t send spam and I do not share the email address of any subscriber. Once subscribed to Mystery Ahead, you may unsubscribe at any time. Thank you and welcome to the Mystery Ahead community!


Starter library on iPad

“Emilia is definitely a character that is close to my heart.”

Mystery Sequels

An excerpt from "The Beast"


Lieutenant Inocente leaned back in his chair. As before, he hadn’t invited her to sit so Emilia stayed standing in front of his desk.

“Cruz,” he said. “I’ve heard that you did everything by the book. Outstanding patrol record. Got a real nice recommendation from your sergeant. Highest grade on the exam. Won the hand-to-hand.” He ran a finger over his moustache. “But the detective unit is a tight-knit group. Can’t say that you’re a good fit.”

“Let me assure you, teniente,” Emilia said. “I’m a team player. I will be giving this job my best effort.”

Lieutenant Inocente slowly sat upright. “Let me put this in a way you’ll understand, Cruz,” he said. “Unless one of my detectives steps up and says they’ll take you on as partner, you just wasted a lot of time and energy going after this job.”

Emilia felt a rush of anger. “That wasn’t a criteria last year,” she pointed out. “Or the year before. Or any year.”

“You’re not last year,” Lieutenant Inocente said.

He got out of his chair and walked past her into the squadroom. Emilia followed.

“This is Cruz Encinos,” Lieutenant Inocente said loudly and every man in the room turned to look. “You’ve all heard she’s the detective candidate from the ranks this year. If one of you wants to partner with her, she’ll be joining the squadroom.”

He looked around and the words if not hung in the air.

3 volume Starter Library by crime writer Carmen Amato

Get the FREE Detective Emilia Cruz Starter Library and meet the first female police detective in Acapulco.

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