ABOUT THIS BOOK
In spite of the fact that detective fiction has been the most popular genre utilised by Spanish authors over the last thirty or so years, the female detective has appeared in such works on relatively rare occasions. Less frequent are Spanish female authors of detective fiction who employ a female detective as their main character. One author who has broken this stereotype is Reyes Calderon, with her female juez de instruccion (examining magistrate), originally created because the author was convinced that one popular, female, main character detective that did exist was simply "a man who was wearing a skirt" (interview with author). With the creation of her Basque character who, over the series, evolves from law-school professor to member of the Spanish Supreme Court, Calderon is able to "design a normal woman who confronts abnormal situations" (interview with author). Through such, Reyes Calderon aptly portrays both how far Spanish women have come since the days/restrictions of the Franco dictatorship but yet how remnants of conservative thought still pervade their mindset. She thus uses the most popular of genres to make a myriad of cultural observations concerning her native country and the women of "her generation". This book focuses on the female detective in Hispanic literature; the Lola MacHor Series, where via the main character Lola, Calderon is conducting a cultural studies experiment/explanation of modern-day Spain; concomitant issues of characterisation and Calderon's debt to Naturalism; Spanish novel writing and narrative style; and the pervading conservative/feminist dichotomy as it transpires in Spanish social commentary and moralising.