Mona Breen is a typical suburban mom, except her life is in ruins. Her career is in the toilet. Her marriage is dangerous. Even her friends are toxic. The one thing that keeps her going is her crappy job covering true crime for the sleazy clickbait site Vice Report. Everyone in her life—including her boss—thinks she should quit this job. But she can’t do it.
Then she gets a story that forces her to look into the cold, lifeless eyes of a woman who gave up. A crime scene in a sketchy neighborhood in Oakland should be a low point. Instead, it offers redemption. She meets two detectives on a covert mission, interviews her favorite hard-boiled mystery writer, and finds—in this lonely death—purpose.
Mona—named by her theater-stricken mother for Shakespeare’s Desdemona—struggles to shape her own story as she writes the tragedy of this corpse. Is Mona’s life also a tragedy? Or could it be a romance, after all?
Vice Report is a noir mystery that examines success, friendship, trust, and tragedy. But for Mona, it’s just another day at work, and she isn’t giving up yet.
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Cover art by Leslie Peterson Sapp.