Death Under The Perseids (A Havana Mystery) by Teresa Dovalpage
About Death Under the Perseids
There’s no such thing as a free cruise in Cuban American author Teresa Dovalpage's addictively clever new Havana mystery.
Cuban-born Mercedes Spivey and her American husband, Nolan, win a five-day cruise to Cuba. Although the circumstances surrounding the prize seem a little suspicious to Mercedes, Nolan’s current unemployment and their need to spice up their marriage make the decision a no-brainer. Once aboard, Mercedes is surprised to see two people she met through her ex-boyfriend Lorenzo: former University of Havana professor Selfa Segarra and down-on-his-luck Spanish writer Javier Jurado. Even stranger: they also received a free cruise.
When Selfa disappears on their first day at sea, Mercedes and Javier begin to wonder if their presence on the cruise is more than coincidence. Mercedes confides her worries to her husband, but he convinces her that it’s all in her head.
However, when Javier dies under mysterious circumstances after disembarking in Havana, and Nolan is nowhere to be found, Mercedes scrambles through the city looking for him, fearing her suspicions were correct all along.
The cruise ship Narwhal, all
twelve decks of her, towered above the terminal building. It had a festive air,
with the hull painted white and bright ribbons of red, yellow and green
splashed all over. From a distance it looked like a giant tropical bird that
had inexplicably landed on water.
August in Miami was, as usual, ninety-four degrees with a devilish mix of heat and humidity that made you want to crawl inside a refrigerator. The Nautilus instructions said to be at Terminal B before noon, but it was well past one and the line to enter the building wasn’t moving. It was worse than being at an airport, por Dios! Then I remembered that we had no right to complain. After all, we had gotten the cruise for free.
I was born and raised in Havana. After marrying Nolan in 2008, I had returned many times to visit my grandmother but never thought of taking a cruise back. And in July 2017, sailing to Cuba was the last thing on my mind. "I’ve won what?" I asked.
The poodle took advantage of my surprise to get away and hide under a chair.
About Teresa Dovalpage
Born in Havana, Cuba, Teresa Dovalpage has a PhD in Hispanic Literature from the University of New Mexico and is currently a Spanish professor at New Mexico Junior College. She is also the author of twelve novels, three collections of short stories, and three theater plays. Her Havana Mystery series, published by Soho Crime, debuted with the culinary mystery Death Comes in through the Kitchen (2018). The second novel, Queen of Bones (2019) was chosen by NBC News as one of the top 10 books by and about Latinos in 2019. The third and fourth — Death of a Telenovela Star (2020) and Death under the Perseids (2021) — are set on Caribbean cruises. You can find more about her on her English blog or Spanish blog.
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