Luis Montez goes from rags to riches to rallroaded; Hard-luck attorney Luis Montez has hit the big-time at last. He's successfully defended Jimmy Esch, the good-for-nothing son of a powerful Denver family. No small bonus, Jimmy's attractive sister Lisa is, as the saying goes, appreciative. It's enough to make a man quit moping about a lost love. What a difference a day makes. Inside of twenty-four hours, a cop rumored to have received bribes from Montez takes a header off a mountain, Jimmy Esch is found butchered, and the cops consider the attorney their top suspect. Lisa - Montez's alibi - has conveniently disappeared. As if all that wasn't enough, Montez must also cope with the news his father is in the hospital. Distracted by family strife and a media circus, Montez broods on the latest wrong turns in his life. Then he decides to act. Jumping bail, he heads across the Rockies to the barrios of San Diego. It's not easy to unravel the perfect set-up when you're down to your last cent. But Montez pursues the truths that will clear his name, and ultimately confronts the powerful force that is Family.
Manuel Ramos is an attorney and part-time professor at Metropolitan State College of Denver. His debut novel, The Ballad of Rocky Ruiz (Northwestern, 2004), was nominated for an Edgar. His other awards include the 1994 Colorado Book Award for Fiction and the 1991 Chicano/Latino Literary Award. Two of his other Montez novels - The Last Client of Luis Montez (2004) and The Ballad of Gato Guerrero (2004) - are also published by Northwestern University Press. Brown-on-Brown (New Mexico, 2003) is the latest novel in the Luis Montez series. Ramos lives in Denver, Colorado.