Monday, September 13, 2010

Cristina García: The Lady Matador's Hotel

Amy Driscoll reviews Cristina García's The Lady Matador's Hotel.
On the first page of Cristina García's new novel, the lady matador stands naked before a mirror, rolling on a pair of long pink stockings as part of her preparatory ritual for the bull-fighting ring.

The ceremony has other steps, too: lighting candles for her mother, eating a single sliced pear -- seeds and all -- and, for extra luck, having silent sex with a stranger two days before a fight.

When she finally steps into the ring, she repeats three words in Spanish and Japanese.

Arrogance. Honor. Death.

The Lady Matador's Hotel is filled with those elements, plus hefty doses of lust, violence and bad intent. It's a ruthless romp through an anonymous Central American capital buffeted by the winds of political turmoil. Suki Palacios -- she of the pink stockings and unusual appetites -- has arrived with her all-male entourage to compete in the first Battle of the Lady Matadors.
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