Illumbe Saga (TV Series)

The Liar | In the middle of the night | Among the dead

Either you remember, or you´re lost.

In The Liar, Alex Garaiko, a 27-year-old farmer, wakes up in the hospital. The only thing he remembers is waking up on the floor of an abandoned factory facing a dead body with a head wound exactly like his. He is diagnosed with retrograde amnesia.

Alex lives off the coast of Basque Country with his uncle who has dementia and his Ukrainian caretaker. Apart from his gardening job, Alex sells medicines illegally to pay off his now-deceased mother’s cancer treatment debt.

As Alex slowly begins to remember, he decides to investigate the truth about what happened to him in the factory that day. Among other things, he finds out that the corpse he was left with was?Félix? Arkaraz – a controversial author who has since been frowned upon after publishing his last book where he tells the community´s darkest secrets. This stirred up much commotion within the neighbors, and the threats were so constant, that anyone could be the suspect tied to his death.

Alex finds out that this all started many years ago. His grandfather Jon and his mother Begoña were involved in the murder of Floren, another neighbor. Writer Felix wanted to talk about this death in any way possible in his second novel but would never get to do so.

Before his death, Felix had planned to blackmail Alex. His plan consisted of telling everyone about his illegal medicine business if Alex didn’t agree to let him interview his grandfather for his new book. However, someone else- who is not Alex- murders him.

With Alex as the most probable suspect, the police continue on with Felix´s murder investigation. Alex races against the clock to prove his innocence and interrogates everyone in town in hopes of any clues that could help his case. He soon finds out that Felix was not who he was said to be. He was an alcoholic and a mediocre writer who abused of his wife. He also finds out who the real murderer is: Joseba. Joseba is the father of Alex´s girlfriend, and he was also Floren´s old business partner. To top things off, he also finds out that Joseba and his mother Begoña once had an adventurous fling, one that would end with her pregnant and giving birth to none other than Alex himself.

Alex finally proves his innocence to the police, makes up with his father, and begins a new life, far away from any illegal businesses and his family´s secrets in the past.

The Liar (El mentiroso) is a fast-paced story about mysterious and strange characters, all within a small-gated community that holds all kinds of secrets.

In In the middle of the night, Diego Letamendia, the singer of a rock band, is in the back seat of a car, dizzy and quite possibly drugged. His girlfriend, Lorea, is asleep in the passenger seat. Someone is driving. They seem to have been kidnapped and Diego is unable to identify the driver. Diego manages to escape.

More than twenty years have passed since Lorea’s kidnapping and disappearance, and since Diego sang for the last time with his rock band in his hometown in the Basque Country (Spain). Diego became the main suspect in this still-unsolved case. Diego’s life in the village becomes impossible, and when he begins to receive death threats, he decides to embark on a solo career.

Presently, Diego returns to town to attend Bert’s (one of the band members) funeral. His manager tries to deter him in every way; this return could be very dangerous. Bert’s death seemed accidental, but there was something very strange about that fire that killed him. Soon everything starts to indicate that it could be a homicide that might be related to Lorea’s disappearance, given that Bert had reopened the case on his own.

Diego, with the support of Bert’s widow, rejoins the other two bandmates to investigate the death of his friend. After a dangerous investigation full of obstacles, altercations, and confusing clues hidden in song verses, Diego discovers that the person behind these crimes is his own manager. Behind his guise hides a murderous “princess hunter” capable of killing anyone who crosses him in his ambitious quest. Diego learns that, over the years, his manager had triggered a series of disappearances that coincided with Diego’s tours, and upon learning that Bert was close to the truth of Lorea’s crime, he decided to act.

The manager, upon discovering that Diego was after him, decides to end his life, and Diego will find himself in the same scene he was in 20 years ago, drugged in the back seat of a car. Except now Angela is in the car with him (with whom Diego has a brief and intense affair), and the manager is at the wheel. Finally, Angela and Diego manage to knock him out and drive the car off the road causing a serious accident. Diego gets out of the car alive and decides to return to his hometown for good.

In Among the dead, Nerea Arruti, an agent of the Ertzaintza (the Basque Police), suffers a car accident with her lover, Kerman Sanginés, a police forensic professional. They are having an affair and were returning from a romantic weekend together when Kerman receives an unexpected call from his wife, which makes him lose control of the steering wheel, causing the vehicle to crash.

Nerea flees the scene in fear that they will be found together, and their secret will be exposed, while Kerman stays at the site of the accident to call the emergency services. The next day, Nerea goes into work only to discover that her lover has been found dead at an industrial warehouse around the area where they had the car accident.

Nerea begins to use all the resources at her disposal to find out what happened after she left the scene. At the same time, she must keep her affair with Kerman a secret. The investigation leads Nerea to find out about a mysterious disappearance of a young man that happened years before, which remains unsolved and seems to be linked to the mystery.

Both crimes have something in common: they seem to be related to “the Raven”, an unidentified person who is thought to be involved in suspicious matters such as corruption, drugs, homicides, and illegal money.

While Nerea faces a big dilemma, of whether to expose her relationship with Kerman or not, she is forced to lead the investigation to find “the Raven”, unmask his identity, and expose the secrets related to both crimes.


RELEVANT DATA: The Liar (El mentiroso) is best-selling author Mikel Santiago´s latest and most awaited novel. His works have been a resounding sales success, with more than 250,000 copies sold in a dozen countries. His titles have climbed to the top of the bestseller lists in Spain and have been published in some twenty countries, winning over readers and literary critics alike. He is currently considered one of the best authors of thrillers, crime novels, and fantasy at an international level. His imprint has generated enormous expectations in the reading community, especially among some of the most followed Booktubers in the networks.  With El mentiroso he began a series of novels set in an imaginary village in the Basque Country, where his next work En plena noche (2021) will also take place.

In addition to his career as a novelist, he works on concepts and scripts for series. Several of his titles are in the process of being adapted to the small and big screen.


What the critics have said:

Really addictive.” Publishers Weekly

“The return of an author who has already been published in 20 countries and whose personal stamp dazzles in each paragraph.” El correo

“Mikel Santiago offers a mysterious plot, with some gentle strokes of terror and fantasy. It is narrated in several voices, is well structured, and the reader is given bits of information at a time throughout the narration. Suspense that does not wane at any time, and makes the pages fly between your hands while the desire to continue reading increases.” De lector a lector

Santiago creates a plot that is enjoyed from beginning to end, where the tension achieved in the first pages is maintained until the end. The plot and the characters hold perfectly and page by page they spin a web that irretrievably catches your attention and your desire to know more.” Críticas Polares


AUDIOVISUAL POTENTIAL: In development for a TV series format.

LANGUAGES AVAILABLE: Spanish, English sample available on demand.