*Starred Review* It isn’t so much crime itself that intrigues Venetian police commissario Guido Brunetti as it is the hidden stories behind the crime, or lurking on its edges. So it is again in this twenty-second Brunetti novel. At the urging of his wife, Paola, Brunetti investigates the death of a mentally handicapped man who worked at the family’s dry cleaners. Did he really die of a sleeping-pill overdose? And why are there no official records indicating that the victim even existed? As Brunetti digs into the matter, he finds himself less bothered by the circumstances of the man’s death than by the fact “that he managed to live for 40 years without leaving any bureaucratic traces.” Others would see only a mildly curious anomaly in the man’s lack of a human footprint across a lifetime; Brunetti sees “mystery and sadness,” and it prompts him to keep digging. What he finds is a saga of appalling human cruelty, but one that eludes the penal code. In stark contrast to the tyranny of silence that shrouded the forgotten man’s life is the outpouring of language and love that encircles the Brunetti family dinner table. In the end, this novel is a celebration of the humanizing power of words. “At one point,” Leon says, describing the dinnertime conversation, “Paola expressed a wish and used the subjunctive, and Brunetti felt himself close to tears at the beauty and intellectual complexity of it.” Name another crime novel that ends like that. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Leon’s success—well more than one million copies in print in North America; a devoted library following—is testament to the heartening fact that character counts in crime fiction. --Bill Ott
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"The familiar characters and Venetian location are described with remarkable freshness and, as always, the edifying result is both amusing and thought-provoking" Sunday Telegraph "Leon's impeccably plotted, utterly involving Italian-set novels (featuring the food-loving Commissario Brunetti) have rarely been less than excellent. So it proves with the latest, The Golden Egg. Involved in routine enquiries into a possible bribery case, Brunetti hears from his wife Paola of the death of an educationally-challenged man who worked at the Brunetti's dry cleaners ... The Golden Egg is Donna Leon on top form." The Good Book Guide "If there's a writer for whom the law of diminishing returns has been revoked, it's Donna Leon. The doyenne of Italian crime fiction, whose stamina in returning time and again to her Venetian beat is matched only by her curiosity, she has proved herself, in the space of 22 titles, not only an able detective novelist, but the author of something more substantial ... It is one of the joys of Leon's work that she can take readers into the sinister heart of Italy, and yet, in the person of Brunetti and his companions, convince us that not all is lost." Herald "The introspective Brunetti, a man with a healthy sense of the absurd and a sharp eye for the fading grandeur of the city's architecture, makes for good company as he negotiates the perilous labyrinth of Venetian police office politics. Deceptively languid in its pace and a masterclass in mood, The Golden Egg . is a meticulously crafted example of how even the most apparently innocuous of crimes can reveal a trove of history." Irish Times "Donna Leon is better than ever.Superb." WI Life
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