Felon turned private eye Gus Corral isn’t doing too well after getting whacked in the head with a baseball bat following his last big case. He was unconscious for a couple of days and still can’t see right. Plagued by headaches, there are days he can’t think straight. Tired, sore and disoriented, he takes his sister’s advice to get out of Denver and help their cousins in Eastern Colorado.
George Montoya’s son, Matías or Mat, has run off again. The seventeen-year-old has run away before, but he always came back. This time, his dad and Aunt Essie know there’s something wrong. As Gus begins to talk to the boy’s family and friends, a picture emerges of a smart kid with strong opinions who fought a lot with his dad. Did he run away because of his father? Or did he leave because his girlfriend broke up with him? Her father, the town doctor, definitely didn’t want his daughter dating a Mexican American.
But when Gus tracks the missing boy to a shelter for runaways in Pueblo, the ailing investigator discovers something much more sinister. The boy was helping victims of human trafficking. Could the criminals have caught on to him? All too soon, men with guns are threatening Gus, warning him to get out of town, or else! Acclaimed writer Manuel Ramos’ fourth novel featuring Gus Corral’s unique and weary voice once again combines a complex and moody mystery with issues of identity, family and responsibility, to oneself and others.
Finalist, Shamus Award in “Best Original PI Paperback” category
“Fans of contemporary regional mysteries will look forward to Gus’s further adventures.”—Publishers Weekly
“Ramos is an authentic voice, and Angels in the Wind is another Mile High Noir winner.” —The Denver Post
“More than just a detective novel, this book is a reflection on the changing landscape of the West and the redemptive power of family. The work of a storyteller at the peak of his form, the return of private investigator Gus Corral reminds me of nothing less than The Long Goodbye set in Colorado. Thrilling, heartbreaking and engrossing, Angels in the Wind is the best yet from one of the masters of the genre.” –David Heska Wanbli Weiden, author of Winter Counts
“What can I say? I absolutely loved Angels in the Wind: A Mile High Noir. Manuel Ramos pulls all the right strings in a novel that is at once heart-pounding and tinged with melancholy. Ramos’s protagonist, Gus Corral, is a Latino everyman with grit and heart who is forced to reckon with small-town hurt and prejudice. There are not too many authors who can craft a mystery with such depth and complexity. A fantastic read.” —Jon Bassoff, author of The Lantern Man
“A labyrinth of misdirection and treachery. Manuel Ramos shoves his very flawed PI, Gus Corral, back into the fray and we cheer as he bulls his way toward justice amid a tangle of family secrets, mayhem, and murder.” —Mario Acevedo, co-author of the high-drama western, Luther, Wyoming
“Manuel Ramos is a legend of Chicano noir, and he’s done it again with Angels in the Wind. Gus Corral is on the case in Melton, Colorado, a small town with some big secrets and characters who might just remind you of a long-lost cousin. In this gripping noir, there’s sexy jazz, rolling bluffs, a missing teenager and the weight of history at every turn. Utterly readable and atmospheric, I couldn’t put this book down.” —Kali Fajardo-Anstine, author of Sabrina & Corina
“One thing is almost as certain as death and corruption: Manuel Ramos’ Chicano angst. You’ll find plenty of all three in his jazzy, fast-paced and delirious whodunits, which stand as an unparalleled achievement in American crime literature.” —Ilan Stavans
“Manuel Ramos is one of my all-time favorite authors and in My Bad he delivers everything I look for in a noir tale. Gus Corral is the guy I want on my side if I’m in trouble and Ramos proves once again he is the master of creating great characters. Clear your schedule and be prepared to read this blitz attack of noir in one sitting.” —Jon Jordan, Crimespree Magazine on My Bad
“Ramos explores issues of the border, identity, violence and slights from outside the community, as well as within. They are thought-provoking and unpredictable. Many linger long after they end; and often they contain depth charges that explode in the reader’s mind after the story has ended. His novels belong on your book shelves.”
—Los Angeles Review of Books on The Skull of Pancho Villa and Other Stories
“Ramos puts Latinos back in the picture. He is known as a crime writer, but that doesn’t quite capture what he does. His books are love stories, political dramas, mordant cautionary tales. Characters who are Latino, black and white, artists, professionals and laborers, are described in staccato chapters, like a catchy corrido.” —Los Angeles Times on The Skull of Pancho Villa and Other Stories
“The Godfather of Chicano noir hits us hard with this collection. Great range, dark visions and lots of mojo—much of it bad to the bone. A fine book!”
—Luis Alberto Urrea, author of Into the Beautiful North, on The Skull of Pancho Villa and Other Stories
“As invigorating as a dip in a Rocky Mountain stream.” —Mystery Scene on Desperado: A Mile High Noir
“A dark mix of North Denver gangsters and Catholicism, but it’s [the] setting that really grips readers. Nostalgia is combined with reality…Ramos gets it right.” —Denver Post on Desperado: A Mile High Noir
“A very impressive debut.” —Los Angeles Times on The Ballad of Rocky Ruiz
“A thickly atmospheric first novel—with just enough mystery to hold together a powerfully elegiac memoir of the heady early days of Chicano activism.” —Kirkus Reviews on The Ballad of Rocky Ruiz
“Ramos succeeds brilliantly in marrying style and substance to form a seamlessly entertaining novel [with] characters and scenes deeply etched with admirable brevity and skill.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review, on Blues for the Buffalo
“Fans of contemporary regional mysteries will look forward to Gus’s further adventures.” —Publishers Weekly