The Tree of Death by Marcia Muller

Last Updated on October 24, 2021 by ellen

The Tree of Life by Marcia MullerThe Tree of Death
Series: Elena Oliverez trilogy (Book 1)
Author: Marcia Muller
ISBN: 0-446-40420-9
Genre: Fiction, Mystery
Release: April 1, 1996
Publisher: Mysterious Press
199 Pages

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Hating the huge and tacky sculpture that would cheapen her exhibit but please the rich patron who donated it, museum curator Elena Oliverez is horrified when the piece suspiciously falls over and kills her boss.

The Tree of Death by Marcia Muller

Elena Oliverez is the curator for the new Museum of Mexican Arts in California. She’s working on her first exhibit there and wants everything to be perfect.  She wants the display to focus on the subtlety of Chicano art and is not happy when a wealthy patron wants her to display a gaudy arbol de la vida (tree of life).

She has a screaming match with her boss in front of everyone about displaying the piece and the next morning he is found dead, killed by the arbol de la vida falling on him. Of course, the police think she is the perfect suspect given their argument and what she has to gain from his death. Now she needs to catch the real killer to prove she didn’t do it.

I’m so glad my Mom passed this book on to me. Not only is it a fun mystery to read but the details about the Mexican culture were fascinating. I had never heard of an arbol de la vida before and it was interesting to learn about. The author did a great job of mixing the mystery with authentic details. I devoured this mystery in one night and need to find a few of her other books.

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