Murder under the sun…
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Set in Barcelona, the story begins when Carlos Marin is handed photos showing his wife committing adultery. But on the way home his briefcase is stolen and the photos disappear. Marin is about to sell the company he and his wife own and is torn between confronting her and keeping up a front till the sale goes through. Meantime at El Universal newspaper, news comes in that Belarmino Suarez, the business editor, has been murdered. The only connection seems to be that Suarez and the Marins were due to meet for dinner to discuss the sale.
As Detective Julian Ortega and Leire Costello, his ex-girlfriend and now crime reporter with the paper, both follow their own lines of investigation, it gradually becomes clear that the reasons for Suarez’ murder may be more complex than they first appear. And as Leire begins to find out more about why Suarez was killed, her own life is suddenly in danger…
The fairly complicated plot covers the decline of the newspaper industry as online news takes over and looks at how social network sites can be used illicitly as a means of gathering information. There are elements of both international conspiracy and traditional murder mystery here, and the author manages to keep the reader guessing till near the end. Both Leire and Julian are attractive characters and their renewed relationship adds an element of fun to the story.
The author, who is apparently an economist and media expert, clearly knows his stuff and this gave an air of realism to both to the running of the newspaper and to the conspiracy aspect of the story. However, I felt the writing was a little clunky and didn’t flow as well as it could have, although I suspect that may be an issue with the translation rather than with the original text. Overall, though, this is a good first novel, enjoyable and even thought-provoking, and I look forward to seeing more from this author in the future.
NB This book was provided for review by the publisher.