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June 25, 2023 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

In-Person: An Evening with John Lantigua & Tim Padgett


June 25, 2023
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm


Books & Books in Coral Gables
265 Aragon Ave
Coral Gables, FL 33134
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Books & Books presents…


in conversation with

Tim Padgett


Player’s Vendetta & In the War Zone of the Heart and Other Stories: Willie Cuesta Mystery Stories

(Arte Publico Press, $18.95)

Sunday, June 25th, 6:00 PM | Books & Books, Coral Gables


Books & Books is thrilled to present an evening with John Lantigua discussing his books: Player’s Vendetta & In the War Zone of the Heart and Other Stories: Willie Cuesta Mystery Stories (Arte Publico Press, $18.95 each).

He will be in conversation with Tim Padgett, and as a special treat, the illustrator of both books, Grizelle Paz will be in attendance for the signing!

This event is FREE and open to the public and books will be available for purchase the night of the event so make sure to stay after the talk for a book signing! Please RSVP only if you intend to join us.

About Player’s Vendetta:

Cuban-American private investigator Willie Cuesta journeys through Miami’s colorful Little Havana as he searches for a woman’s missing boyfriend, a man who has embarked on his own desperate and vengeful search for a killer. Original.





About In the War Zone of the Heart and Other Stories: Willie Cuesta Mystery Stories:

In the title story of this collection, detective Willie Cuesta is on a stakeout in a singles bar, tracking an errant husband, when he gets a call about a potential case. The next day, he meets Isabel Guevara, who is originally from Nicaragua. Her twin sons fought on opposite sides of that country’s civil war; one in the army, the other with the contra rebels. They both survived, but their feud didn’t end with the conflict. And now, word has it that the one who remained behind is on his way to Miami to kill his brother! Willie has no idea how he will prevent a bloody confrontation, but he agrees to try. This collection of twelve stories featuring private investigator Willie Cuesta illuminates the histories and issues of the numerous Latin American communities that call Miami home―and how the past continues to haunt them. There’s a family concerned that their mother’s new fiancé isn’t the former Cuban political prisoner and hero he claims to be; a heavily tattooed Salvadoran gang member in hiding from the vicious former colleagues hunting him; a beautiful Haitian woman being stalked by a killer who uses voodoo to stoke her nightmares; and a wealthy American who made his fortune in Guatemala on the backs of its people and is now receiving death threats from his victims! The impact of civil war, revolution, corruption and criminal violence crash ashore in these stories set in South Florida. Whether Willie is doing surveillance in salsa clubs, interviewing clients over cafecitos in Little Havana or on a fishing boat in the Gulf, his attempts to find justice for clients are always enlightening and exciting. An Edgar Award finalist and Shamus Award nominee, John Lantigua served as a foreign correspondent in Latin America, and his investigator, a former Miami Police Department detective, appears in a series of stand-alone novels.


About the Author:

Longtime Miami resident John Lantigua is the author of eight suspense novels and one collection of short stories. His last five novels and the short stories have featured Cuban American private eye Willie Cuesta: “Player’s Vendetta” (1999); “The Ultimate Havana” (2001); “The Lady from Buenos Aires” (2007); “On Hallowed Ground” (2011); “Remember My Face” (2020); “In the War Zone of the Heart” (2022). All are available from Arte Publico Press.

He has won the International Latino Book Award for mystery twice and has been a finalist for the Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America and the Shamus Award from the Private Writers of America. His work as a reporter has garnered two Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards and a share of the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting.

About the Moderator:

Tim Padgett is the Americas Editor for WLRN, covering Latin America, the Caribbean and their key relationship with South Florida.

Padgett has reported on Latin America for more than 30 years — including for Newsweek as its Mexico City bureau chief and for Time as its Latin America and Miami bureau chief — from the end of Central America’s civil wars to the normalization of U.S.-Cuba relations. He has interviewed more than 20 heads of state.

In 2005, Padgett received Columbia University’s Maria Moors Cabot Prize for his body of work in Latin America. In 2016 he won a national Edward R. Murrow award for the radio series “The Migration Maze,” about the brutal causes of — and potential solutions to — Central American migration.

Padgett is an Indiana native and a graduate of Wabash College. He received a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School and studied in Caracas, Venezuela, at the Universidad Católica Andrés Bello. He has been an adult literacy volunteer and is a member of the Catholic poverty aid organization St. Vincent de Paul.

Contact Tim at [email protected]

About the Illustrator:

Grizelle Paz is a Cuban American artist, born and raised in Miami’s Little Havana. She studied Fine Art at Florida International University and has exhibited locally in various group and solo shows. Her work has transitioned from portraiture to interpretations of the female figure among flowers, as symbols of rebirth, beauty, and strength.

Grizelle has a career as an award-winning Graphic Designer and Illustrator and has worked for various publications, such as The Miami Herald and People en Español. She has illustrated book covers and two successful bi-lingual children’s books. Currently, she is a Senior Graphic Designer for Miami Dade College, where she has helped produce numerous marketing campaigns.

Her passions are art, music, and her three children.