From the Publisher
“Readers who like their thrillers to possess something beyond a fast-paced, tricky plot will find much to marvel over [here]...Breathes fresh air into the crime novel genre.” Los Angeles Times
“Effortlessly conveys ideas and characters...[and] displays the mystery novel as a richly expressive medium for ideas... Garcia-Roza will find an eager audience in English.” The Washington Post
“Combines elements of the suspense novel with an erotic Brazilian ambience in a mix that keeps the pages turning.” St. Petersburg Times
“A beautifully atmospheric, hard-boiled crime novel.” Booklist (starred review)
“Garcia-Roza's Hitchcockian trick of knowing exactly how much to reveal to keep his audience off-balance keeps this melancholic debut simmering.” Kirkus Reviews
In this unusual, deadpan thriller, the first of a trilogy by a bestselling Brazilian writer, Inspector Espinosa of the Rio de Janeiro police department, a jaded intellectual who'd rather visit a used bookstore than a crime scene, must catch the murderer of Ricardo Carvalho, a corporate executive found shot to death in a parking garage, his briefcase and wallet missing. Was it a robbery gone wrong or was someone involved in Carvalho's business or personal life out to get him? Thus begins a novel with an intriguing, circuitous plot and mysterious, expertly shaped characters, who are always one step ahead of Espinosa. Garcia-Roza shifts tense and voice, showing the reader what really happened everything except the person manipulating the story, whose identity remains a secret until the surprise ending. Espinosa, a solitary divorc , is attracted to two women in the case: Bia, Carvalho's beautiful, indifferent widow, the beneficiary of a $1 million life insurance policy; and Alba, the robust, sexy girlfriend of a man also interested in Bia. A third woman, Rose, Carvalho's loyal secretary and sometimes mistress who claims to have important information, vanishes. When two more people linked to the investigation meet gruesome deaths, Espinosa knows that the elusive Rose is the link to all the crimes and intensifies the search for her. The sultry Rio setting, whose exotic neighborhoods add definition to the action, and a most unorthodox detective should appeal to police procedural fans with a taste for the offbeat. (July 10) FYI: Holt will publish the other two novels in the trilogy, Lost and Found and Southwesterly Wind. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Inspector Espinosa investigates the supposed murder of a Rio de Janeiro businessman who was shot to death in his own car. However imaginative, Espinosa nevertheless fails to consider suicide because the victim's money and gun are missing. How this came to pass constitutes the bulk of a fanciful and complicated cat-and-mouse plot involving a high-dollar insurance policy, a beautiful widow, an opportunistic thief, an adventurous-but-disappearing secretary, and actual murder. A heady and somewhat exotic mixture of psychological suspense and police procedure, this was a Brazilian best seller. It will appeal to readers who enjoy sophisticated international mysteries. [Holt plans to publish the other novels in Garcia-Rosa's crime trilogy. - Ed.] Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
This 1996 Brazilian bestseller introduces a crime that isn't a crime and a detective who doesn't quite seem like a detective either. Inspector Espinosa, of Rio de Janeiro's First Precinct, likes classic American fiction, collects gift editions, and has a quiet eye for the ladies involved in the death of mineral-exploration executive Dr. Ricardo Carvalho, who left his office at the end of the day and was shot before he could pull out of the parking garage. If it's hard for Espinosa to wax enthusiastic over any of the murder suspects-renowned designer Bia Vasconcelos, Carvalho's glamorous widow; her masterful father, still disapproving of his son-in-law; her friend Júlio de Azevedo, architect and professor; Júlio's lover Alba Antunes, part owner of an Ipanema gym-there's an excellent reason: Carvalho committed suicide and left behind a letter offering the police $20,000 to pronounce the case unsolved. The shooting looks like murder only because the letter, the gun, and, of course, the $20,000 have disappeared, soon followed by Carvalho's devoted secretary, Rose Benevides. The case assumes new urgency when Rose's mother is tortured and strangled (no doubt about whether she's been murdered), but even then, Espinosa, who doesn't let grass grow under his feet-he's soon taken Alba's well-toned body to bed-is still more in the dark than his readers. Garcia-Roza's Hitchcockian trick of knowing exactly how much to reveal to keep his audience off-balance keeps this melancholic debut simmering. First of a most-welcome trilogy.