Paco Ignacio Taibo II is one of the most popular and influential authors in Latin and South America. His endlessly inventive, highly-political detective novels, featuring the idiosyncratic private eye Héctor Belascoarán Shayne, are set in the teeming landscape of Mexico City, a combustible mix of poverty, tragic class warfare, the anarchic and absurd. For Shayne, it is a world that can bring tears one moment and blood the next.
An Easy Thing is the first novel in the Shayne series. Coping with his mother’s death, his father’s disturbing legacy and the loss of his lover, Shayne is faced with three difficult cases: violent threats against the daughter of a soap star, a murder at a strike-threatened factory and a quest to find an extraordinary missing person — Emiliano Zapata, hero of the failed Mexican Revolution.
“Taibo’s quirkiness has earned him a raft of favourable comparisions that include Dos Passos, Richard Condon, Heller, Doctorow and Garcia Marquez — all fine but at the risk of detracting from his singularity.” — Chris Petit, The Guardian
“His name is Hector Belascoaran Shayne and he’s an independent investigator in Mexico City…he’s the damndest, most unique PI you’ll likely encounter in this day and age.” — Joseph Wambaugh.
“An Easy Thing introduces one of the most memorable private detectives I have ever met.” —Ross Thomas, author of Briarpatch
“A blazing bolero that lurches through the morass of Mexico City.” — The Wall Street Journal
“Flights of lyricism…a confident sense of comedy…without the slightest whiff of pretence. And the action just keeps rolling…” — Village Voice
“ … the real enchantment of Mr Taibo’s storytelling lies in the wild and melancholy tangle of life he sees everywhere.” — New York Times Book Review
“Taibo’s prose is rich in metaphor and his confident, insightful storytelling makes the individual pieces of his novel intriguing long before the connections among them are apparent.” — Publisher’s Weekly
“Funnier and sadder than a dancing bear…” — New York Times
“No novelist since Fuentes has described Mexico City with more power.” — The Nation