cover image Day In, Day Out

Day In, Day Out

Héctor Aguilar Camín, trans. from the Spanish by Chandler Thompson. Schaffner (IPG, dist.), $14.95 trade paper (128p) ISBN 978-1-943156-26-9

Camín’s second novel to be translated into English (after Death in Veracruz) is a torrid, murky noir full of murder, sex, lies, secrets, police corruption, and more sex. Serrano is a writer living in Mexico City, tormented and obsessed with Liliana. They carry on a steamy love affair for nearly 30 years, through layers of lovers, and Serrano always wonders if Liliana really did, as she claims, order a man killed decades ago for dishonoring her younger sister. Serrano, a coward who both loves and fears Liliana (“I am a writer who can’t look himself in the eye”), nevertheless decides to investigate Liliana’s boast of murder following an encounter with an old adversary. His investigation attracts the unwelcome attention of two police officers, who tell a much different version of the killing. And one of Liliana’s other lovers also offers more conflicting details. Liliana eventually tells Serrano the truth, but by then his discovery of police corruption has put him in danger. Faced with a moral dilemma, Serrano decides that what is most important is not what actually happened, but what people think happened. This is a fast-moving and complex story, most memorable for its depiction of Serrano twisting in the wind with love, lust, and fear. (Nov.)