The She-Devil in the Mirror by Horacio Castellanos Moya
A novel translated by Katherine Silver
“How could such a tragedy have happened, my dear,” begins Laura Rivera’s desultory, breathless stream-of-consciousness narration of events surrounding the murder of her best friend, Olga María. Nobody knows who pulled the trigger, but Laura will not rest until she finds out. As The She-Devil in the Mirror progresses, Laura’s theory of the murder becomes increasingly complex and incredible. She also treats the reader to the sordid details of Olga’s love affairs, childhood memories of the two friends, and her own self-obsessed musings.
A detective story that takes its reader through the social, political, economic, and sexual chaos of post-civil war San Salvador, The She-Devil in the Mirror is a reminder that justice and truth often are illusive. Horacio Castellanos Moya’s relentless, obsessive narrator—rich, paranoid, wonderfully perceptive, and, in the end, fabulously unreliable—paints, in spite of her seeming frivolousness, a profound portrait of a society in a state of collapse.
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