If I were one of those people paid to write breathless accolades for things, I’d probably call Luis Alfredo Garcia-Roza’s Blackout, the latest installment in the Inspector Espinosa series, a “taut psychological thriller.” But I’m not one of those people, so I’ll have to try to find a better way than that to describe the book, and to let you know that you should probably go and get yourself a copy.
A disclaimer, of sorts: I’m not a huge fan of mystery writing. It’s not that I don’t like the genre; I just think it’s capable of being much more than what it generally passes for these days. I know that Agatha Christie continues to sell in the thousands (besides apparently keeping PBS viewers glued to their sets), but I’ve always preferred the likes of Chandler, for instance, or people like Elmore Leonard. As I’d written elsewhere (reviewing Pursuit, Garcia-Roza’s last offering), a lot of current stuff in the genre “seems to consist of either A: Softcore porn and a handful of dead bodies, or B: recipies for baked goods, a cat, a few chaste kisses, and a handful of dead bodies–and yes, I’m aware that there are exceptions, but please, go to the Mystery section of your local bookstore and see if the selection doesn’t bear me out–this is a rare bird: creative, thoughtful, literary, and sometimes given to flights of fancy.” Continue reading “Luis Alfredo Garcia-Roza: Blackout”