Book Club: House of Beauty – Melba Escobar
It’s been a while since I’ve read anything, anything that I felt I should recommend to you on Book Club anyway. House of Beauty was actually a recommendation to me by a friend – loved it!
Set in the city of Bogotá, Colombia, I found the story gripping and brutal. This is a cleverly written crime fiction with a social conscience. The story is told from Claire’s prospective – a psychoanalyst who frequents the House of Beauty as a client of Karen’s.
Who is Karen? She’s moved to the city to earn money to send home to her young son. The House of Beauty is a high-end salon and as a therapist she plays the confidante of many of her clients as she waxes and massages. When one of Karen’s clients, a teenage girl, is found dead, the girl’s mother turns to Karen for information since she was one of the last people to see the girl alive. The women’s inner and outer lives start to intertwine as their daily lives drop in and out of the salon’s doors.
I could not put this book down! The writing of this story is smart and riveting. Corruption and double standards around class, gender and race are all part of a very provocative tale.
Please do give this a go. It wasn’t my usual choice of story, but it was definitely worth the read.