Rathbone (The Euro-Killers, A Spy of the Old School, etc.) measures out a precisely modulated thriller set in an eerie and highly charged political arena. Madrid is dressed in the trappings (if not the spirit) of mourning as France has finally died and is lying in state. Robert Fairrie returns home to Find his best friend murdered in the bathtub; and, fearing for his own life, Fairrie sits clown to make a taped confession. He introduces himself as an Argentinean socialist with a bitter but scholarly obsession with Juan Peron. Shortly after Peron's death, Fairrie began a correspondence with Steve Cockburn, a journalist specializing in Latin America; then, rather suddenly, Cockburn appeared in Madrid and requested Fairrie's help. Cockburn, it seemed, had been offered the option to buy a series of tapes allegedly recorded by Peron, sort of a rambling oral diary. Because the price was high and the circumstances somewhat suspicious, Cockburn asked Fairrie to help authenticate or discredit the tapes. Locked deep in a bank vault, a crew of buyers, experts and hangers-on sampled the tapes' shocking revelations: among the tidbits ""Peron"" discussed were Evita's sexual relationship with her brother and the location of Martin Bormann in Argentina. As sexpot Pepita Gonzalez, the woman selling the tapes, stepped up her demands for an answer, all parties involved (representing the requisite gamut of international powers who stood either to gain or lose if Peron's reputation were to be further blackened) attempted to influence Fairrie's verdict. And, it seemed, there was an assassin on every street corner. But the game's not over with Fairrie's confession. Madrid is in this strange state of suspension, and perhaps Fairrie's story hasn't told all his secrets. Neatly constructed and cagily revealed, this mostly talk tale is punctuated with mild irony and some punchy surprises. Sophisticated, tidy suspense.