David Hewson: Semana Santa (UK 1998)
From the Publisher:
Southern Spain. It is in Semana Santa - Holy Week - and the heat is building up in the city. This is always a difficult time for the police, with thousands of visitors adding to thousands of hooded penitents parading elaborate statues through the Medieval streets in long processions, the week of prayer culminating in a huge bullfighting fiesta on Easter Sunday. This city is an imaginary one - although it is not unlike Seville - superbly and atmospherically evoked, with Medieval streets and modern slums as well as the fine old houses of the rich and influential, some of whom have secrets going back to the terrible days of the Civil War. When a hideous double murder is discovered on the first day, the men of the force - and visiting female academic, Maria Gutierrez - know they are in for a long week. More murders and the gradual discovery of a chain of corruption spread through the city and its history like cancer, turn the case into a race against time, as all around, the religious carnival gathers its own momentum, building up to a shattering climax - and even then there is a great twist in the tail! A thriller with its roots in the past, a wonderful mystery, a fabulous evocation of place with great characters, Semana Santa marked the debut of a big name for the 90s.
David Hewson: Semana Santa. HarperCollins, ISBN: 0006510620 (April, 1998), 498 p., £5.99.