The Sound of One Hand Killing
Teresa Solana, translated by Peter Bush
Bitter Lemon, May 7 2013, $14.95
In Barcelona detective twins Eduard Martínez and Borja Masdéu return to their office only to find someone broke in and trashed the place. Heeding the advice of a friend, best-selling noir author Teresa Solana hires the siblings to investigate alternative therapies for a noir she plans to write while she stays in a vacant apartment upstairs.
Instead they find the apartment’s occupant Brian Morgan dead inside, but Borja’s Assyrian statue, the Lioness of Baghdad, he stashed there remains safe there. Although unaware that the corpse is CIA, the brothers sign up for various New Age classes. Only they find a director Dr. Horaci Bou murdered by a Buddha statue.
The third Borja and Eduard Barcelona satirical Noir (see A Shortcut to Paradise and A Not So Perfect Crime) continues to lampoon the sub-genre while this time also mocking New Age saviors. The enjoyable storyline rotates between the two homicides and Borja’s smuggling efforts. However it is the amusing skewing of con artists (especially believers who con themselves) preying on those struggling to find healing for even regular life ills in order to live as a norm in an abnormal land.