It is the eve of the FIFA World Cup, the globe's premier sporting event. The host country is Brazil. All eyes are on the country's principal striker, Tico "The Artist" Santos, the greatest player in the history of the sport. All the politicians in Brasilia, from the President of the Republic on down, have their seats squared away for the finale, when they hope to see Argentina, Brazil's bitterest rival, humbled by the Brazilian eleven. But then, just three weeks before the first game, Juraci Santos, Tico's mother, is kidnapped. The star is distraught. The public is appalled. The politicians are outraged. And the pressure is on Chief Inspector Mario Silva to get her back. Suspects aren't lacking. Among them are a cabal of Argentineans, suspected of having spirited the lady away to put Tico off his game; the star's gold-digging, top-model girlfriend, whom his mother dislikes and has been trying to get out of his life; his principal rival, who wants to play in the World Cup in Tico's place; and the man whose leg Tico broke during a match, thereby destroying his career. In the end, Silva and his crew discover that the solution to the mystery is less complex--but entirely unexpected.
This Brazilian mystery takes place just prior to the 1914 World Cup that is set to take place in Brazil. The Brazilian super star Tico, "The Artist", is expected to help Brazil run away with the win over their top rival, Argentina. But someone has kidnapped Tico's beloved mother and everyone is concerned that Tico won't be at his best with her missing.
Chief Inspector Mario Silva is assigned this case, with instructions to get her back before the highly anticipated games. There are plenty of suspects depending on whether the kidnapping was to hinder Brazil's chances of winning, or if it was a revenge kidnapping by another star player, or if it was purely for money.
Though this was a newer book from the CI Silva mysteries, I was immediately caught up with the characters. Silvia's boss was more of a hinderance that a help, and seemed only to be politically motivated in his actions. The excitement of the World Cup was very evident. Though I got engrossed in the characters and the mystery, the Brazilian location was only felt because of the country wide "football"/ soccer craze. I would read more in this series as I do like police procedurals, and this one was well done.
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Would you listen to A Vine in the Blood again? Why?
No, even though I enjoyed it, there are too many other good books.
Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?
Yes, enough action to keep you interested. Mostly this series has great characters.
Which character – as performed by Peter Berkrot – was your favorite?
They are all good. Very believable and likable.