Iberian Ties – My Book Review

Quintin Vargas

Genre: Crime Fiction / Mystery / Suspense
International Thriller 

Publisher: Vanguard Publishers
Date of Publication: May 13, 2019
Number of Pages: 405
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Without a motive, how do you catch a killer? A gripping thriller in the vein of Harlan Coben, Paula Hawkins, and Lee Child.

A rising star psychiatrist, American Nate Shelley is in Spain’s Canary Islands, making his world debut at a convention. But after delivering his keynote address, he and his fiancée Miro are arrested for murder.

Nate knows he’s not guilty, but is his future wife involved in some way in the crime? Miro’s directly implicated when the murder victim is identified as her stalker.

Is Nate’s career ruined? Is he facing life imprisonment? Does the American couple stand a chance of convincing the Spanish authorities—and Interpol—that they’re innocent? Not in a post-Brexit, anti-Trump European environment.

Racing to clear their names, Nate and Miro will soon be embroiled in sham investigations, powerful cartels, and family secrets finally coming to light.

Full of intrigue, this gritty international crime novel is a thrilling ride.

“Brilliant thriller! I totally loved and enjoyed this book!! Interesting twists and turns, well-developed characters and suspense all along the way. Definitely kept me on the edge of my seat. Can’t wait for the next book!” –Gaby M., Goodreads Review

“This was an education about cultures and history as well as an unpredictable mystery.” –Robert R., Amazon Review

copy of my


Iberian Ties – My Book Review

“Sanchez walked down to the greenroom, and greeted Diego. Diego was using his hand lens and some tiny scissors to work on his infant plants. “You’re a real master, son. These exotic plants are the best I’ve seen,” said Sanchez. “They all foxgloves?”


My grandfather always said a man who owned land was way richer than anyone else.  Wow – did Quintin Vargas write a twisting story around that concept and included a few murders, a kidnapping, and multi-level intrigue.

Iberian Ties starts off immediately with a dead body and then the dead bodies multiply. The story is woven around a newly engaged couple who are targeted for both being killed and being the killers.

The story is arresting all on its own but one of the personal connections I love is the references to foxglove plants. Foxglove was among the first toxic plants I learned about and its importance to human health, as well as its use as a poison for hundreds of years.

The item I found most disconcerting was the continual references to the US 2016 Presidential Election. I might have missed the connection within the book but the story would be so much more profound without the referrals back the election – unless the author intended to use it as a timeline reference. The author could have easily used just years for a timeline reference point.

Iberian Ties is well-written though it could have used another pass for editing and tightening of the storyline. What was refreshing was the non-cliché writing of bad cops who were actually trying to solve the murders. Major kudos also go to the cover image which is dark, draws your eyes to it and begs to be picked up from a bookshelf. The addition of the map at the very front put the location of the story into a good perspective.

If you love a good thriller mystery then give Quintin Vargas’s debut book a chance.



Iberian Ties is the first work of fiction published by Quintin Vargas. In addition to being an author, he combined a career as professor and dean in various American universities with becoming owner of a firm that prepared new immigrants to enter the marketplace and international workforce. His work impacted leadership development for various domestic and international private industries, non-profit organizations, and higher education.


As an academic, he served as dean and provost at various universities, including DePaul University in Chicago, the University of Texas, San Antonio, and St. Edward’s University. His academic writings have been highlighted in various publications, including the Journal of Research and Development in Education, the National Commission on Testing and Public Policy, and the Journal of Thought
He and his wife, Marty, have five children and thirteen grandchildren. They reside in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex.

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