“In her latest novel, Laura Restrepo navigates the perilous terrain of a mother-son relationship against the historical backdrop of Argentina’s Dirty War, an epoch marked by military rule, a fertile underground resistance and hundreds of thousands of desaparecidos, people plucked from their lives and vanished forever.
“Lorenza, the protagonist, is a Colombian who writes books and newspaper articles and travels from country to country following assignments and lovers with her son Mateo in tow. When the novel opens in the 1990s, mother and son embark on a life-changing journey to Buenos Aires, where Mateo was born during the dictatorship years. They’ve come searching for his Argentine father, Ramón, a former leader of the resistance who has been absent from Mateo’s life since the young man was 2.
“All of Restrepo’s novels . . . reflect her preoccupation with social, political and economic issues, and No Place for Heroes is no different. But this novel, deftly translated from Spanish by Ernesto Mestre-Reed, has a more tantalizing back story. . . .
“Restrepo pulls off the narrative with an admirable mix of satirical wit and theatrical tension.”