Thursday, 8 November 2018

#BlogTour Death Comes in Through the Kitchen by Teresa Dovalpage

Today it's my turn on the BlogTour Death Comes in Through the Kitchen by Teresa Dovalpage. It's an interesting combination of political intrigue mixed with crime, romance and topped off with an exotic flair.

About the Author
Teresa Dovalpage is a Cuban transplant now firmly rooted in New Mexico. She was born in Havana and now lives in Hobbs, where she is a Spanish and ESL professor at New Mexico Junior College. She has published nine novels and three collections of short stories. Her English-language novels are A Girl like Che Guevara (Soho Press, 2004), Habanera, a Portrait of a Cuban Family (Floricanto Press, 2010), and Death Comes in Through the Kitchen (Soho Crime, 2018), a culinary mystery with authentic Cuban recipes.

Her novellas Las Muertas de la West Mesa (The West Mesa Murders, based on a real event), Sisters in Tea/ Hermanas en Té and Death by Smartphone/ Muerte por Smartphone were published in serialized format by Taos News.

In her native Spanish she has authored the novels Muerte de un murciano en La Habana (Death of a Murcian in Havana, Anagrama, 2006, a runner-up for the Herralde Award in Spain), El difunto Fidel (The late Fidel, Renacimiento, 2011, that won the Rincon de la Victoria Award in Spain in 2009), Posesas de La Habana (Haunted ladies of Havana, PurePlay Press, 2004), La Regenta en La Habana (Edebe Group, Spain, 2012),  Orfeo en el Caribe (Atmósfera Literaria, Spain, 2013), and El retorno de la expatriada (The Expat’s Return, Egales, Spain, 2014).

Follow @Dovalpage
On Facebook/dovalpage
Visit (Blog in English) and/or (Blog in Spanish)
Buy Death Comes in Through the Kitchen

About the book
Set in Havana during the Black Spring of 2003, a charming but poison-laced culinary mystery reveals the darker side of the modern Revolution, complete with authentic Cuban recipes Havana, Cuba, 2003: Matt, a San Diego journalist, arrives in Havana to marry his girlfriend, Yarmila, a 24-year-old Cuban woman whom he first met through her food blog. But Yarmi isn’t there to meet him at the airport, and when he hitches a ride to her apartment, he finds her lying dead in the bathtub.

With Yarmi’s murder, lovelorn Matt is immediately embroiled in a Cuban adventure he didn’t bargain for. The police and secret service have him down as their main suspect, and in an effort to clear his name, he must embark on his own investigation into what really happened. The more Matt learns about his erstwhile fiancée, though, the more he realizes he had no idea who she was at all - but did anyone?

Matt is on his way to Cuba to marry his sweetheart. He isn't sure what to think when she doesn't turn up to meet him. Everything passes through his mind except the fact she could be dead. He finds himself in a strange country in the unenviable position of being the main suspect in her demise, despite a clear lack of evidence.

The way Dovalpage incorporates Yarmila's food blog into the story is quite interesting. Not a new concept, but in this case it is more about giving the reader a flavour of the culture. How the food has such an emotional meaning, the nostalgia of each recipe and at the same time giving an insight into the Cuban culture.

In a way it lets Yarmila, despite her death, participate as an almost living character in the story. It takes some of the pressure off of Matt and also gives the reader a better image of her life without Matt. The main character sort of bumbles through his strange surroundings with the best intentions and with the naiveté of a man in love with a mysterious young woman who supposedly loves and lives life to the max.

It's quirky, colourful and vibrant, and yet it is also written in a way that shows both sides of a double-sided coin called Cuba. The underlying feeling of fear and the daily subliminal threat the majority feel about the political situation comes through with the strong characters who love life and yet fear for their lives at the same time.

It's an interesting combination of political intrigue mixed with crime, romance and topped off with an exotic flair.

Buy Death Comes in Through the Kitchen at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer.
Publisher: Soho Press
Buy Death Comes in Through the Kitchen at Amazon com
Buy Death Comes in Through the Kitchen at Soho Press

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