From Publishers Weekly
Camilleri's agreeable eighth contemporary police procedural featuring the crotchety but insightful Inspector Montalbano finds the Italian detective at home in Marinella enjoying the ministrations of his wife, Livia, after he was shot by a child trafficker in 2006's Rounding the Mark
. But his recuperation is hampered by the demands of a new case: the abduction of Susanna Mistretta, an attractive university student and daughter of a geologist. Unable to trust his colleagues to handle the case properly, Montalbano focuses on subtle anomalies—such as the direction the missing girl's motorbike was pointed—that suggest the kidnapping is more than the simple extortion attempt it appears to be. The witty writing and acerbic protagonist should appeal to fans of Colin Dexter's Inspector Morse. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
On the mend from the gunshot wound he sustained at the conclusion of Rounding the Mark
(2006), police inspector Salvo Montalbano is called back to work when the kidnapping of a young woman rocks the insular Sicilian community of Vigata. As Montalbano becomes intrigued with the case, he gradually feels himself start to reengage with the rest of humanity, though the almost metaphysical lethargy that has been weighing on his soul will not dislodge easily. Camilleri seems more interested here in Montalbano's inner turmoil--including the inspector's reactions to his strained relationship with his lover, Livia--than he is with the kidnapping story. That's just as well, really, because the main plot this time is not nearly as meaty as in past episodes. But the focus of this consistently entertaining series has always been more on character than mystery, and although this installment is, at best, a transitional episode, it still delivers what fans have come to expect: a perfectly blended mix of comedy and melancholy, and a hero whose joie de vivre is perpetually under siege from an absurd world. Bill OttCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved