Monday, July 21, 2014

The Good Suicides by Antonio Hill

I met Inspector Hector Salgado last year, through Summer of Dead Toys. Our meeting was cordial, as two strangers often are when they first are introduced. His line of work is complex, dangerous; his intelligence strong, perceptive; his temper volatile. And by the end of things, his personal life was in an even deeper turmoil than at the start. I was hooked, but our relationship could not progress -- until I got a copy of The Good Suicides.

The Good Suicides is the second Salgado book by Antonio Hill (the first was translated by the author himself, who, when he is not writing novels, is a translator of English Language fiction into Spanish. I do not know which was the original language of this work,) When I closed the covers of the first book, I was hopeful that this could become a series rich with characters and depth as some of my favorites in this genre. Certainly there were enough interesting interactions between characters, enough realism, enough trueness in the relationships. Salgado, himself, seemed to be that intelligent, flawed central character, that draws me right in. But would it all continue to capture my reader's eye, mind, and heart? To put it simply, yes.

Barcelona skipped over autumn, and into winter with this book. On Reyes Night (which I looked up and I think is Cabalgata de los Reyes Magos, the night of the Three Kings' Parade/ Twelfth Night) a young woman throws herself from a train platform into the path of an oncoming train. Gristly, gruesome, and puzzling, as she has no motive. Also puzzling, because of a message found on her mobile phone "never forget", and a picture of three dead dogs hanging in a tree. As the investigation continues, it is discovered that a colleague of hers at work, who was on a retreat with her, also killed himself, and his family. Is there a connection between the suicides?

The secondary story line follows the disappearance of Salgado's wife, which occurred at the end of the first book. This, too, is  an interesting arc, especially as it gives the opportunity for the reader to get to know Agent Leire Castro, also from the first book,  a bit more.   Also of interest to me were the several discussions by the characters of what makes a "good suicide".

And, once again, though certain questions are wrapped up at the end, Hill stirs the pot with more mystery to be chased down in another book. That will be my third date with Salgado. I'm pretty sure he won't stand me up.

Tags: an-author-i-read, blogging-for-books, made-me-look-something-up, not-a-cozy-mystery-more-a-thriller, part-start-of-a-series, read, taught-me-something, will-look-for-more-by-this-author

Many thanks to Blogging for Books, and to the publisher, for sending me a copy of The Good Suicides.

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