The Black Minutes

( 1 )

Overview

When a young journalist named Bernardo Blanco is killed in the fictional Mexican port city of Paracuán, investigation into his murder reveals missing links in a disturbing multiple homicide case from twenty years earlier. As police officer Ramón “el Macetón” Cabrera discovers, Blanco had been writing a book about a 1970s case dealing with the murder of several young schoolgirls in Paracuán by a man known as el Chacal. Cabrera realizes that whoever killed Blanco wanted to keep the truth about el Chacal from being ...

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The Black Minutes

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Overview

When a young journalist named Bernardo Blanco is killed in the fictional Mexican port city of Paracuán, investigation into his murder reveals missing links in a disturbing multiple homicide case from twenty years earlier. As police officer Ramón “el Macetón” Cabrera discovers, Blanco had been writing a book about a 1970s case dealing with the murder of several young schoolgirls in Paracuán by a man known as el Chacal. Cabrera realizes that whoever killed Blanco wanted to keep the truth about el Chacal from being revealed, and he becomes determined to discover that truth. The Black Minutes chronicles both Cabrera’s investigation into Blanco’s murder and goes back in time to follow detective Vicente Rangel’s investigation of the original el Chacal case. Both narratives expose worlds of corruption, from cops who are content to close the door on a case without true justice to powerful politicians who can pay their way out of their families’ crimes. Full of dark twists and turns, and populated by a cast of captivating—and mostly corrupt—characters, The Black Minutes is an electrifying novel from a brilliant new voice.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Set in the fictional oil port of Paracuán, Mexican author Solares's debut deftly treads a risky tightrope between police procedural and surreal fantasy. Someone kills young journalist Bernardo Blanco while he's investigating a 20-year-old case involving the serial torture-murders of young girls, violations so horrifying that they sicken even hardened cops. Solares unflinchingly follows both detective Ramón Cabrera, who's assigned to Blanco's murder, and detective Vicente Rangel González, who investigated the original crimes, two idealists barely keeping themselves afloat in a sea of corruption, as they uncover layer after layer of depravity. With continually shifting perspectives and nightmarish intrusions—real or imagined?—of actual people like “B. Traven” (the enigmatic author of Treasure of the Sierra Madre), this haunting novel forces readers to confront that bedeviling paradox of human nature, the eternal mystery of wickedness. (May)
Larry Rohter
The best detective novels are those that go beyond the limitations of genre and a specific story to limn the broader society in which they take place. Mr. Solares does that in a profound but entertaining fashion here…Mr. Solares is a graceful, even poetic, writer, especially in his hard-boiled dialogue and his descriptions of the wildly varied landscapes and ethnic types of northern Mexico. Though the world of The Black Minutes is one to inspire fear and revulsion, Mr. Solares's descriptions of it are oddly beautiful and fascinating in the same way that overturning a rock and observing the maggots beneath can be a perversely edifying spectacle.
—The New York Times
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802170682
  • Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/1/2010
  • Edition description: Translation
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 683,962
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 1.30 (d)

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