Sensitive cultural issues are engaged when dozens of members of an Amazon tribe are apparently poisoned.
In the Brazilian rain forests of Para, Raoni, a child warrior from the Awana tribe, rages at the inexplicable deaths of countless fellow tribesmen, including his grandfather and his best friend, Tinga. Jade Calmon, who works for FUNAI, the federal government's National Indian Foundation, discovers the boy and other survivors, including Father Carlo Castori, a former missionary now serving as a parish priest in Azevedo, the closest town. This duo, along with Amati, a surviving Indian, runs through the list of possible causes and culprits and concludes that the tribe was poisoned. They bring their suspicions to Azevedo, where a septet of local honchos confers, fueled by alcohol. The next morning, the corpse of local womanizer Omar Torres is discovered as Amati stands nearby, machete in hand. Jade heatedly argues for Amati's innocence. Thus does the matter (and the murder) arrive on the desk of Chief Inspector Mario Silva of the Brazilian Federal Police (Perfect Hatred, 2013, etc.). The disreputable Torres, it happens, had countless enemies; except for Father Castori, every bigwig in Azevedo had a motive for killing Torres. With the prickly Jade breathing down his neck, Mario and his quirky team work to unravel the poisoning and solve the murder.
Mario's seventh is a solid procedural with a huge cast of economically drawn characters, sharp dialogue, a vigorous pace, and a welcome twist or two.