Lies With Man by Michael Nava

Latino criminal defense lawyer Henry Rios takes on the case of his life when he defends a young, queer activist who is charged with the murder.


Coming April 2021 from Amble Press

Los Angeles, 1986.

A group of right-wing Christians has put an initiative on the November ballot to allow health officials to force people with HIV into quarantine camps. It looks like it’s going to pass. Rios, now living in LA, agrees to be counsel for a group of young activists who call themselves QUEER [Queers United to End Erasure and Repression]. QUEER claims to be committed to peaceful civil disobedience. But when one of its members is implicated in the bombing of an evangelical church that kills its pastor, who publicly supported the quarantine initiative, Rios finds himself with a client suddenly facing the death penalty.

Reviews & Endorsements

“Michael Nava’s eighth Henry Rios Mystery may very well be his best—which is saying a lot, considering the high bar he’s set for himself. LIES WITH MAN, set in 1980s Los Angeles, feels like a story ripped from today’s headlines. Nava’s prose is powerful, matching the weight of the story—as he deftly unfurls a dark, haunting novel that readers will find impossible to ignore. LIES WITH MAN is an important, engaging, and complex crime tale.” —Alex Segura, acclaimed writer of Star Wars Poe Dameron: Free Fall, Miami Midnight, and Blackout

“Henry Rios, cerebral, earthy, completely straightforward, and gay, is back in a book that, though set decades ago, deals with issues resonating today. Lies With Man is prime Michael Nava, a pro’s pro, a writer who can see all sides of an issue and knows which side he’s on. He also knows how to make a reader turn a page. I couldn’t put this book down and I urge everyone to pick it up.” —SJ Rozan, best-selling author of The Art of Violence

“A detective unlike any previous protagonist in American noir.” —The New Yorker

“Nava is one of the best.” —The New York Times Book Review

“If you haven’t discovered Nava yet, an uncommonly rich experience awaits.” —Kirkus Reviews

MICHAEL NAVA is the author of an acclaimed series of seven crime novels featuring gay, Mexican-American criminal defense lawyer Henry Rios. The Rios novels have won seven Lambda Literary awards and Nava was called by the New York Times, “one of our best.” In 2001, he was awarded the Publishing Triangle’s Bill Whitehead Lifetime Achievement Award in LGBT Literature. A native Californian and the grandson of Mexican immigrants, he divides his time between San Francisco and Palm Springs.

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