Reseña: L’Hora Zen, de Teresa Solana

This post is bilingual, scroll down for the English language version.

Edicions 62, 2011. 278 pág. ISBN: 978-84-297-6853-4.

l hora zen-teresa solana-9788429768534

Sinopsis: Los hermanos detectives Borja y Eduard se disponen a recibir en su despacho de opereta a una clienta muy especial, Teresa Solana, que está escribiendo una novela sobre la moda de las terapias alternativas ambientada en la parte alta de Barcelona. Debido a un contratiempo inesperado los dos hermanos se ven envueltos en una conspiración de espionaje internacional que estará a punto de costarles la vida. Al mismo tiempo que el encargo de la escritora les obliga a frecuentar un exclusivo centro de meditación llamado La Hora Zen y a investigar el enrevesado asesinato de un médico homeòpata, Borja y Eduard se las tendrán que ver con la CIA, con un comisario de los Mossos d’Esquadra que les tiene calados, y con su propia incompetencia. Y, a todo esto, para sobrevivir a la crisis, Borja ha decidido hacer de intermediario en una operación de tráfico de antigüedades… (mi traducción de Edicions 62).

Después de las dos novelas anteriores protagonizadas por los hermanos gemelos Borja y Eduard (Un crimen imperfecto/Un crim imperfecte (2006) y Atajo al paraíso/Drecera al paradís (2007), hacer click sobre los títulos para ver mis reseñas), tenía mucho interés en leer su última novela, L’Hora Zen (2011). Si antes su crítica iba dirigida a la clase política (Un crim imperfecte) y al mundo literario (Drecera al paradís), en esta nueva entrega su crítica se dirige a la moda de las terapias alternativas. El resultado no ha cumplido mis expectativas. El tema es menos atractivo y sus dos personajes protagonistas han perdido la frescura incial que tenían en los primeros libros. El resto de personajes son demasiado convencionales y la resolución del caso es bastante simple. El resultado final es una comedia de costumbres en tono de humor que puede hacer las delicias de sus lectores más incondicionales. Confío sinceramente que Teresa Solana recupere su nivel habitual en su próxima novela.

Mi calificación: 2/5.    

Una reseña más favorable de L’Hora Zen la pueden encontrar en A l’ombra del crim  por Anna María Villalonga.

Edicions 62

 

The Sound of One Hand Killing, by Teresa Solana

 The Sound of One Hand Killing

Synopsis: The two detective brothers, Borja and Eduard, are about to receive, at their operetta office, a very special client, Teresa Solana, who is writing a novel, set in the upper part of Barcelona, about a new fashion, alternative therapies. Due to an unexpected setback, the two brothers will be involved in an international espionage conspiracy that nearly cost them their lives. At the same time that the writer’s mission requires them to attend an exclusive meditation centre called Zen Moments and to investigate the convoluted murder of a homeopathic doctor, Borja and Eduard will have to deal with the CIA, with a local police inspector that knows them well, and with their own incompetence. And, to all this, to survive the crisis, Borja has decided to become an intermediary in an antique trafficking operation…

After the two previous novels featuring twin brothers, Borja and Eduard (A Not So Perfect Crime/Un crim imperfecte (2006) and A Shortcut to Paradise/Drecera to Paradis (2007), click on the titles to see my reviews), I had much interest on her latest novel, The Sound of One Hand Killing/ L’Hora Zen (2011). If previously her criticism was addressed to the political class (A Not So Perfect Crime) and to the literary world (A Shortcut to Paradise), in this new instalment, her criticism is aimed to the fashion of alternative therapies. The result has not met my expectations. The subject is less attractive and her two main characters have lost the initial freshness they had in the first books. The rest of characters are far too conventional and the resolution of the case is quite simple. The end result is a comedy of manners in tone of humour that can delight her more unconditional fans. I sincerely expect that Teresa Solana regains her usual standard in her next novel.

My rating: 2/5.

Bitter Lemon Press

Teresa Solana

I received yesterday a belated birthday present: L’Hora Zen (Edicions 62, 2011) by Teresa Solana. The English translation, The Sound of One Hand Killing (Bitter Lemon Press) will be released next 7 February, 2013. The Spanish-Castilian version is not available yet. I hope my Catalan is good enough to fully appreciate it. Stay tuned.

On a separate issue I just realised that a short story “Still Life No. 41” – Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine by Teresa Solana (Dell Magazines), has been nominated for the 2013 Edgar® Awards. Congratulations Teresa.

2013-01-19 10.26.08

The Sound of One Hand Killing by Teresa Solana

Following my previous post HERE about L’hora zen -Teresa Solana’s latest book-, I find out that it will be released by Bitter Lemon Press in February 2013 (in the UK) and in May 2013 (in the US) as The Sound of One Hand Killing translated by Peter Bush.

Two detectives, brothers Borja and Eduard, are contracted by best-selling author Teresa Solana to research the world of so-called alternative therapies. They enrol for a course at Zen Moments, an exclusive meditation centre in the ritziest part of Barcelona, only to discover the director murdered, whacked in the head with a statuette of the Buddha. The violent death of a neighbour – who happens to be a CIA agent – simultaneously drags them into an international conspiracy complicated by Borja’s attempt to smuggle a priceless Assyrian figurine, the “Lioness of Baghdad”.
In this, the third in her satirical series, Catalan ‘noir’ novelist Teresa Solana mercilessly punctures the pretensions of New Age quacks who promote pseudo-science and pseudo-spirituality. At the same time, Solana draws compassionate portraits of characters trying to live ‘ordinary’ lives in circumstances that have ceased to be normal, yet still cope with such every day issues as adultery, the menopause and simply surviving to the end of the month. (Bitter Lemon Press).

L’hora zen, de Teresa Solana

Edicions 62 have recently released Teresa Solana latest novel.

Synopsis: Borja and Eduard are going to receive a very special client at their operetta office, Teresa Solana. She is writing a novel about a new fad, alternative therapies, the action is set in the upper part of Barcelona. Due to an unexpected setback the two brothers will get involved in an international espionage’s conspiracy that can almost cost their lives.

While the writer’s mission will force them to attend an exclusive meditation centre called L’Hora Zen, and investigate a convoluted murder case of an homeopathic doctor, Borja and Eduard will have to face the CIA, a local police inspector and their own incompetence.

Besides, in order to survive the current crisis, Borja has decided to act as a broker in an antique transaction.

Source: edicions 62.