If dinosaurs were not extinct, but had rather spent the last few hundred million years evolving into sentient beings, what a dilemma they'd have! Would they live side-by-side with humans, another intelligent race vying for control of the world? If they chose that course, would they be the dominant race, or would humans? And, if they chose another course, what would it be?
In Anonymous Rex, the first of the Dino Mafia books, we learn that when it appeared that Neanderthal and his ilk were going to evolve into what they did (namely, us) dinosaurs decided to take it to the downlow: they would construct disguises--or guises, as they call them--that would allow them to walk among us, live and work with us. Secret but equal (if very, very uncomfortable: imagine what it would be like to have to clamp your tail down under a costume, all day every day).
Vince Rubio is a down-on-his-luck private dick in L.A. who also happens to be a velociraptor. His partner was killed 8 months ago and he's been hitting the herbs--that is to say, basil, rosemary, and thyme--pretty heavily since then. His client base has all but eroded away, his town house is in foreclosure...he's a mess. So, when he gets subcontracted (by a fellow dino, natch)to investigate a night club fire, and the case leads him to New York where his partner was killed, he's off the hard stuff and onto the chase.
The hard-boiled aspect of Anonymous Rex is adequate, if a bit hackneyed. What's fun about this novel is the hilarious explication of dinosaur culture and how it can have been maintained lo these thousands of years without humanity being any the wiser. Oh, and the name-dropping of famous dinos (Napoleon. John Fogerty. Tom Waits. Paul Simon.) doesn't hurt the fun factor either.