The Conspiracy of Silence
Sex scandals in high places… an exposé on the murky world of high-stakes politics.
The conscience of a town steeped in sexism, vanity and hypocrisy is pricked by the brutal murder of a mysterious woman in a park in Los Angeles. But the shock is transformed into a steamy, seductive scandal when the body turns out to be that of Susan Whitaker, the flamboyant wife of the governor of California.
Soon, a dazzlingly intricate shuffle of volatile links leads the police to the delicate theory of secret lover/blackmailer, and to the indictment of Benjamin Carlton, Hollywood’s most influential black celebrity.
Then curious things begin to happen when Carlton’s ambitious girlfriend, Rita Spencer suddenly unearths the shocking secret that Susan Whitaker did not, in fact, exist. She little realizes however that her discovery of this colossal fraud is a mere curtain raiser to a chilling world of ugly skeletons dating back to the assassination of a U.S. senator in a Washington hotel sauna, skeletons connected to riveting sex scandals in high places, skeletons the FBI and political kingmakers will kill for…
Page count: 207 pages
Date of Release: 30th September 2015
About the Author
Augustine Sam is a bilingual Italian journalist and an award winning poet. A member of the U.K. Chartered Institute of Journalists, he was formerly Special Desk editor at THISDAY newspapers, an authoritative Third World daily first published in collaboration with the Financial Times of London. He later became correspondent for central Europe. His poems have been published in two international anthologies: The Sounds of Silence & Measures of the Heart. One of his poems, Anguish & Passion, was the winner of the Editors’ Choice Awards in the North America Open Poetry contest, USA.
Augustine’s debut novel, Take Back the Memory, a contemporary Women’s fiction, received a Readers’ Favorite 5-star medal. His second book, Flashes of Emotion, a collection of poems, was the 2015 International Book Award Finalist. Augustine lives and works in Venice.
The dim figure continued to lurk in the dusking patch of tangled shrubbery until he was completely enveloped in darkness. Then he choked and swore and frothed at the mouth and went down on all fours. After a while, he clambered out of the shrubbery like a ghost, picked himself up deftly, and wiped his hand across his brow. He was tall and had an athletic build. His hands were covered with fleeced gloves, his face partially masked by a hood. He had a definite presence in spite of the aura of repulsion that swelled around him like foul breath. For a spell, he stood in death-like silence, in a navy hooded sweatshirt, a pair of matching pants, and black running shoes. His dark brown eyes studied his environment like a bloodhound determined to unearth a misplaced object without losing its sense of smell.
A short distance away, small cylindrical light bulbs cast an eerie glow over the lush greenery of Glennon Park, capturing its beauty in a halo of kaleidoscopic brilliance. And then a throng of men in fancy tee shirts and short pants intermixed with women in jeans and sleeveless tops, whisked into view. The dim figure, hearing their muffled voices over the sound of the fountain’s cascading waters, stiffened. Like him, the fountain stood in a poorly lit area of the park. Surrounded by luxuriant shrubs, it was the place where randy youths prone to exploiting the semidarkness for romantic mischief loved to loiter.
On this particular night, there were no lovers necking by the fountain, but there was something else. A black diamond Cadillac was parked beside the fountain. The curiously unusual sight caused the dim figure’s hands to shake with excitement. Cars were not allowed that far into the park, so whatever fantasies within the limits of human accomplishment the Cadillac’s driver had conceived, this was the wrong night for it, he mused. This’ll be my last murder, he decided, the climax of a long, enterprising career as the greatest hit man of all time. He was a killer so efficient and so elusive that even the FBI nicknamed him Shadow of Death for his uncanny ability to dissolve into a penumbra after every hit.