Fiction Books:

Grab a Snake by the Tail


Paperback / softback

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Grab a Snake by the Tail by Leonardo Padura
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Havana's Chinatown is not his usual beat, but when Conde is asked to take a murder case by the sultry, perfectly proportioned Police Lieutenant Patricia Chion, a frequent object of his nightly fantasies, he can't resist. Pedro Cuang is found hanging naked from a beam in the ceiling of his dingy room. One of his fingers has been cut off, and the outline of two arrows was carved with a knife on his chest. Was this a ritual Santeria killing or a just a sordid settling of accounts in a world of drug trafficking beginning to infiltrate Cuba in the 1980s? Soon Conde discovers unexpected connections, secret businesses and a history of misfortune, uprooting and loneliness that affected many immigrant families from China. The Barrio Chino was once one of the largest Chinatowns in the West. Now it feels like a ghetto of uprooted families, with its derelict cemetery and boarded-up shops. The story is soaked in atmosphere: African spells cast by babalao sorcerers, deliciously smoke-filled bars, deep friendships, and beautiful women. Especially the exotic Afro-Chinese Patricia Chion.

Author Biography

Leonardo Padura was born in Havana, Cuba, in 1955. A novelist, journalist, and critic, he is the author of several novels, including "The Man Who Loved Dogs", two volumes of short stories; and several nonfiction collections. His novels featuring the detective Mario Conde have been translated into many languages and have won literary prizes around the world. He lives in Cuba.
Release date Australia
May 16th, 2019
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
Bitter Lemon Press
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