If none of these crime short stories wins a prize this year the judges will have proved they have no sense of humour. To be blunt, I can’t recall a cleverer comic crime story collection – probably because there hasn’t been one.
Reminiscent of Saki at his most inventive and unified only by Solana’s uniquely anarchic Spanish humour, these fables are dazzlingly differentiated. The title-story tells of what it promises and is packed with crime fiction in-jokes and deliberate anachronisms; the second is a blueprint for the perfect modern-day murder; the third a we-can-see-what-she-can’t comedy with a brilliantly callous last paragraph…and so they go on, via a gang of ghosts, a vampire who uses Factor 50 sun-cream and a crowd of Barcelona’s riff-raff, hurtling through to the last sentence of the book: “you never know what might happen.”
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