Luiz Alfredo Garcia-Roza, Author, Benjamin Moser, Translator , trans. from the Portuguese by Benjamin Moser. Holt $24 (272p) ISBN 978-0-8050-6889-4

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 divorcé, 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.

Reviewed on: 06/10/2002
Release date: 07/01/2002
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 272 pages - 978-0-312-42118-2
Open Ebook - 272 pages - 978-1-4668-5030-9
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