Robert Wilson is an Englishman who writes crime novels set in Seville. The Hidden Assassins, his ninth novel, came out in January. This is the best possible news for his fans, who already know that there is no one writing better police procedurals right now. Wilson’s detective is Jefe Javier Falcon, middle-aged, divorced, tense, dogged, and brilliant. He’s nearly paralyzed by his attraction to his stupendously sexy restaurateuse lady friend Consuelo, who’s every bit as complex as he. And there could be no more compelling setting than the city of Seville, which Wilson seems to know as well as Michael Dibdin knows Venice.
The Hidden Assassins has to do with the bombing of a crummy apartment building with a mosque in the basement, leading the nervous citizens to a jump to the obvious conclusion that undesirable Muslim immigrants have dragged the city into the international terrorist conflict. But things are, of course, not what they seem.
Wilson’s books are noir without the snappy hats and silly dialogue. There is oppressive heat, sultry wind, great food, smoking, cold wine, and steamy sex. And, Spain being Spain, three fourths of the action comes after dark. Marvelous stuff.