Abad and Barroso Saga (Film / TV Series)

Red Beauty | The secret life of Úrsula Bas | The man who killed Antía Morgade

Nothing is what it seems. No one is who they say they are.

In Red Beauty (Belleza roja), a group of six people dine together in the garden of a luxurious house on the outskirts of Santiago de Compostela, in Northern Spain. What they don’t know is that in the bedroom’s floor lies the body of Xiana Alén, a fifteen year old, whose corps looks almost like a work of art. Every single one of them automatically becomes a suspect: her parents, her aunt Lía Somoza, an internationally renowned painter, a couple of friends and her old great-aunt.

The people in charge of investigating this case are Santi Abad, who is back at the police force after a year and a half long psychiatric leave; and Ana Barroso, the brilliant deputy inspector. With the help of the new superintendent Álex Veiga, they start a relentless search that will make them uncover the best-kept secrets of the Alén Somoza family, one of the most powerful and wealthy families of the Galician elite.

It is a story where everything fits like a Rubik’s cube, with unique characters, who are full of flaws and shaped by the circumstances and are forced into extreme situations.

In The Secret Life of Úrsula Bas (La vida secreta de Úrsula Bas), we follow Abad and Barroso in a new case that analyzes human behavior through the same feelings that we have all experienced at least once in our life: anger, boredom, jealousy, monotony… Úrsula Bas, a successful Galician writer, is kidnapped when she cleaves her house. But the kidnapper is someone Úrsula knows very well: an admirer whose clutches she’s fallen into without any kind of opposition and who, eventually, will kill her.

The story begins with Úrsula telling her own story from the basement she’s locked in, unaware of where she is or what’s going to happen to her.

Alongside the superintendent Álex Veiga, Abad and Barroso begin to investigate where is Úrsula. But when they cbegin the search, they encounter an unexpected obstacle: no one in Ursula’s circle is speaking up.

Trying to find meaning to these silences, Abad and Barroso start a journey that puts the viewers in Úrsula’s shoes, delving into her thoughts in captivity. The spectators learn about Úrsula’s many faces through her past, remembering the moments that have led here to this point and the consequences it will have for her family.

The Man Who Killed Antía Morgade (El hombre que mató a Antía Morgade) starts in a very similar scenario as the first book: a dinner in Santiago de Compostela. This time, six old friends have a reunion, during the Santiago Apostol celebrations. During the firework show, they hear a loud noise that doesn’t seem to come from the city: it’s gunshots.

Abad y Barroso are the designated investigators. The key to it seems to be connected to a different death: the suicide of Antía Morgade, a friend of the group back when they were teenagers. Morgade ended her own life after she was sexually abused by Héctor Villaboi, one of her mentors, who has just been released after serving twenty years in prison for his crimes, and whose current location is unknown.

When the case takes a left turn because of some surprising secrets, the investigators will have to do everything that’s in their hands to find the murderer and the man who killed Antía Morgade before Death comes to visit again.


RELEVANT INFORMATION: The Red Beauty saga is made up of three books: Red Beauty, The Secret Life of Úrsula Bas and The Man Who Killed Antía Morgade. The first two titles have been acclaimed by readers, and have thousands of ratings on Goodreads, and have also been a commercial success. The third novel has also been a success among readers and critics.

Red Beauty has won the Frei Martin Sarmiento Award and it reminds us of critically acclaimed films such as Rian Johnson’s Knives Out or Kenneth Branagh’s Murder on the Orient Express. The Secret Life of Úrsula Bas was awarded with the Manuel Murgía Award.


What the critics have said:

“One of the most powerful, trendy and renowned noir writers.” Carles Francino (Cadena SER)

“The critics have fallen at Arantza’s feet with a novel that enthralls you from beginning to end. A piece of work you’ll read in a second.” Onda Vasca

About The Secret Life of Úrsula Bas: “A confirmation that the excellent Red Beauty wasn’t just a hallucination. […] A noir novel where the procedural excerpts are handled with care. […] A rhythm based on the wise management of the story”. Juan Carlos Galindo (Babelia)


AUDIOVISUAL POTENTIAL: TV Series, Miniseries, Film, TV Movie.

LANGUAGES AVAILABLE: Spanish, Galician, and Italian.