| | Little Havana Mystery Series
| || Player's Vendetta: A Little Havana Mystery (1999)|
Private investigator Willie Cuesta is a Cuban-American who knows the highs and lows of Miami's Little Havana. When a woman asks him to find her missing boyfriend, Willie suspects there's more to the case then meets the eye. It turns out that the boyfriend is seeking a murderer for personal revenge. From Little Havana's underground political movements to Miami's steamy nightlife, Willie must rely on all his skills to stop a man from destroying his future...and prevent a killer from striking again!
| || The Ultimate Havana (2001)|
Praised by Carl Hiaasen as "fresh" and "authentic," the Edgar Award-nominated novels of John Lantigua present a sizzling slice of Cuban-American life. In this intriguing new novel, private eye Willie Cuesto takes on the smoke and shadows of the Cuban cigar industry...
| || The Lady from Buenos Aires: A Willie Cuesta Mystery (2007)|
Like James Grippando's When Darkness Falls (2006), Lantigua's latest Willie Cuesta mystery focuses on Argentina's "dirty war," during which thousands of dissidents vanished or were murdered between the mid-1970s and the early 1980s. Here the Miami private eye is hired by Fiona Bonaventura to find her dead sister's missing daughter. Assuming there is a daughter, that is: Fiona's sister disappeared more than 20 years ago, in Argentina, and there is no hard evidence she ever had a child, apart from Fiona's unshakable belief that she has tracked the girl to Miami. Cuesta, introduced in 1999's Player's Vendetta, is a noirish kind of chap, and the novel is appropriately atmospheric, with a large cast of villainous types and a beautiful client who may not be entirely what she seems. Readers familiar with the Cuesta series will note that, with this novel, the author is tackling a theme of greater sociohistorical importance than previously; but even though the story centers on a politically volatile period in recent history, Lantigua never forgets he's writing a mystery, not a polemic. David Pitt
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|On Hallowed Ground: A Willie Cuesta Mystery (2011)|
From Publishers Weekly In Lantigua's gripping fourth novel featuring Miami PI Willie Cuesta (after 2007's The Lady from Buenos Aires), Carmen Vickers de Estrada, who moved to Miami from Medellín, Colombia, to escape the threat of kidnapping, asks Cuesta, who's been serving as security chief for his brother's nightclub, to protect her son, José, and his girlfriend, Catalina Cordero. Two years earlier in Colombia, Carmen's husband was killed resisting abduction, and a year later, José was held captive for seven months even after the ransom was paid. After only a few days on the job, Cuesta witnesses a team of men snatch Carmen from a car blocked on a Key Biscayne road. Cuesta's quest to rescue Catalina, whose relationship with her captors is unclear, takes him to Colombia. The fast-paced action is well matched by concise prose, making this a treat for Elmore Leonard devotees. (Mar.)
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