Black Widow’s Wardrobe
by Lucha Corpi
Published: 30 Nov 1999
Bind: Trade Paperback
A Latino Literary Hall of Fame’s Best Mystery NovelLook Inside
Was it a specter from the past, some Aztec revenant that had inspired the “Black Widow” to kill her husband? Or did these chilling murders have more to do with the rights of property and inheritance, and mere greed? In Lucha Corpi’s third and final installment to the Gloria Damasco Detective Series, Black Widow’s Wardrobe, the intrigue is high, the questions are many and the answers lie in the sleuthing skills of one woman.
Who better than Gloria Damasco, that indomitable detective with a flair for clairvoyance, to unravel this intricate and pulsing plot, which winds its way from an exotic Day of the Dead celebration in San Francisco to the even more exotic sites and customs of Tepozotlán, an Indian village high in the mountains above Cuernavaca? Gloria soon finds herself in an uncanny struggle to rescue the soul of Licia, the Black Widow, who believes herself possessed by the spirit of La Malinche, the eternally condemned slayer of her mixed-blood offspring during the Spanish conquest of Mexico. Part thriller, part exploration of myth and history, Black Widow’s Wardrobe is a page-turner.
Named Best Mystery Novel in 2000 by the Latino Literary Hall of Fame.
“A nicely curlicued plot…that keeps the pages flying. Strongly recommended.”
“Set in California and Mexico, the novel explores the two lands’ intertwined history while engaging the reader with a tale of bloody retribution.”
“Part mystery, part history, part travelogue, part spiritual speculation—a busy, many-layered invention stuffed within an inch of its many lives.”
For LUCHA CORPI, art has always meant activism. As a woman, a Hispanic, an immigrant and a mother, she has always found herself breaking down barriers in both life and literature. Corpi was born in 1945 in Jáltipan, Veracruz, Mexico, a small tropical village on the Gulf of Mexico into a community that fostered creativity, performances and an appreciation for music, poetry and storytelling.
In addition to poetry and mystery novels, Lucha Corpi also writes for children. In 1997, she published her first bilingual picture book, Where Fireflies Dance / Ahí, donde bailan las luciérnagas (Children’s Book Press), and The Triple Banana Split Boy / Diente dulce (Arte Público Press) will appear in 2009.
Corpi holds a B.A. in Comparative Literature from UC-Berkley and an M.A. in World and Comparative Literature from San Francisco State University. A tenured teacher in the Oakland Public Schools Neighborhood Centers Program for 30 years, she retired in 2005.
Learn more at voices.cla.umn.edu/artistpages/corpiLucha.