by Marsali Taylor
Promoting Crime Fiction
July 31st, 2014
Filomena Buscarella is an ex-cop latina who left Ecuador for the bright lights of the US. Now she’s a woman on a mission: to get the big boss who’s poisoning all the land in his area…
From the first sentence, this book was a delight. Filomena is smart and sassy, and totally believable, from her tussles with her three-year-old daughter Antonia (an extra in this book is a fun story told by Antonia aged 12) through sorting out unpleasant thugs and hitting the worst news ever, to the joys of a surprising new romance. She’s the superwoman we women would all like to be, taking everything in her stride – she’s the fastest improviser around, and there’s no situation she can’t get out of somehow, but in a way that you feel ordinarywoman could too, if she just had Filomena’s pazzazz. The ‘voice’ was wonderful, the action fast, the ethical dimension of the story satisfying. This is a re-issue of Wishnia’s third novel (of five Filomena books), first written in the 80s, but there was no outdated feel, and none of those heart-sinking ‘Now this is what you missed in the last three books’ paragraphs. It read like a stand-alone, and once I’d started I couldn’t put it down.
If you like Santa Teresa’s Kinsey Millhone, or Val McDermid’s Kate Brannigan, you’ll love Filomena. The first in the series is 23 Shades of Black.