(Yucatán Is Murder)

In the coastal scrubland of Yucatán, Mexico, circling vultures lead vacationing scientist, Ben Candidi, to a corpse. As in an ancient Mayan sacrificial rite, the victim's chest was cut open and heart removed. Ben had fit the vacation around the public health project of his soul mate, Rebecca Levis. But plans change drastically when Rebecca recognizes the face as B'alam Chuc, a student at her host university.

Why was B'alam dressed as a peasant, and what is the meaning of the hieroglyph writings found in his pocket? The police insist it was a robbery, and the social welfare bureaucracy does little to help the traditional Mayan parents, who speak no Spanish. When B'alam's eight-year- old brother, Ichik, asks for help, Ben's sixth investigation swings into action. As Ben and Rebecca use their knowledge of Mayan history and culture to interpret clues from the neglected crime scene, the picture of an evil and debauched criminal conspiracy emerges. The truth about B'alam may come at a high price.

The intended audience for this novel is general readers (adult); mystery-thriller; adventure; literary and mainstream readers.

The story background includes science; technology; Yucatán, Mexico; the Maya; Mayan history; Mayan glyphs or hieroglyphs; Mayan culture; Mayan language; Mayan pyramids, including Tulum, Ek'Balam, Chichén Itzá, Xumal; ancient Mayan ritual human sacrifice; Mérida, Mexico; sailing; scuba diving; Yucatán tourism; Cancún, Mexico; Cozumel, Mexico; Yucatán ecotourism, cenotes, cave diving, underground rivers, hydrology and irrigation; Yucatán drug smuggling; U.S.A. drug interdiction; Yucatán public health; Yucatán university; Yucatán social services; Yucatán police; Yucatán geography; Yucatán economy; Tarpon Springs, Florida; Florida springs; chemistry, biology and public health.

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