Antipodes

Maria Antonia Oliver, Author, Kathleen McNerney, Translator Seal Press (CA) $8.95 (212p) ISBN 978-0-931188-82-4
Trafficking in women and drugs always go together, says private investigator Lonia Guiu in this thriller of greed and exploitation. While flying to a six-month Australian vacation, Lonia endures the company of Cristina Segura, a wealthy and spoiled Majorcan demoiselle. Months later, Cristina reappears in Melbourne as a closely guarded prostitute and drug addict, then vanishes. Concern for the young woman eventually leads Lonia to engage the assistance (and affections) of charming investigator Henry Dhul. He produces information on the Melbourne-Majorca criminal network but, regarding Cristina, only a badly beaten corpse. Rashly penetrating the ring's Majorcan connections to find Cristina's murderers, Lonia nearly becomes its victim in a brutal finale. An awkward translation undercuts the high-action drama of the hunt. Moreover, it diminishes the appeal of Lonia, a feisty, impetuous and often vulgar narrator who is capable of some stunningly bad decisions, but who usually gives as good as she gets, even in rough company. Oliver is the author of Study in Lilac. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/01/1989
Release date: 09/01/1989
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