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The Damned Season Paperback – May 1, 2007


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 117 pages
  • Publisher: Europa Editions; First Edition edition (May 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1933372273
  • ISBN-13: 978-1933372273
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.7 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #940,672 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Set in 1946, Lucarelli's taut middle volume of his De Luca trilogy (after Carte Blanche) finds Commissario De Luca, who was a police officer during the Mussolini regime, in a perilous position. Under an assumed name, De Luca is just trying to survive any way he can when a member of the Partisan Police catches him in the woods outside Ravenna and drags him into an investigation of a triple homicide. Despite his instincts for self-preservation, De Luca can't refrain from making observations that display his professional expertise. When he's seduced by the local strongman's girlfriend, De Luca finds himself further at risk. While many authors have written of the conflicts faced by honest police officers in Nazi Germany, few American readers will be familiar with the aftermath of WWII in Italy, and Lucarelli excels at portraying fear and suspicion in a country struggling to recover from its national trauma. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

The second in the De Luca Trilogy to appear in the U.S. is set in 1946 and finds the former Commisario De Luca dodging partisan reprisals for the role he played as a member of the secret police under Mussolini. When he's recognized by a partisan in an isolated village between Bologna and Rome, De Luca--torn between the need to keep a low profile and the inevitable curiosity he feels in the face of an unsolved crime--reluctantly agrees to help investigate a double murder with political implications. The moral ambiguity at the heart of Italy's postwar power struggle permeates the action in this tense, atmospheric tale. The hero's own ambiguity about his actions during the war, as well as his cynical view of the postwar world, links him to other ideologically imperiled investigators (Arkady Renko in Martin Cruz Smith's Moscow-set series, for example), but the most notable aspect of this trilogy is Lucarelli's ability to give texture to a particular historical moment. Bill Ott
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Leonard Fleisig VINE VOICE on December 21, 2007
Format: Paperback
One man damned as a wrongheaded fool.
One year and another he walked the streets,
And a thousand shrugs and hoots
Met him in the shoulders and mouths he passed."

Carl Sandburg.

At the conclusion of Carlo Lucarelli's "Carte Blanche" in the spring of 1945, the fascist government of Italy had just collapsed and Commissario (Investigator) De Luca, like many officials of all stripes tarred with the brush of employment by the regime, was last seen fleeing for parts unknown. Volume II of Lucarelli's De Luca Trilogy, "The Damned Season", finds Commissario De Luca in hiding, using a false identity, wandering through the towns and villages of northern Italy just trying to get by and avoid arrest by former partisans now in control of large areas of Italy. As luck would have it, De Luca stumbles into a village in which a triple homicide has just been committed. As fate would have it the partisan police officer tasked with investigating the murders recognizes De Luca and makes De Luca an offer he can't refuse, help me solve the murder and I will preserve you new identity or get arrested and executed. De Luca accepts the offer not just because of his strong desire for self-preservation but his almost compulsive desire to actually do what a detective does best - solve crimes.

The plot is not complex and although interesting not the main reason why this book was worth reading. As drawn by Lucarelli, De Luca is a pretty compelling figure. As noted in a Preface to the book the character of De Luca was formed after Lucarelli interviewed a police officer whose career spanned most of the middle years of the 20th-century. (The preface actually does a great job in setting up the essential character of De Luca and should not be overlooked.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Blue in Washington TOP 1000 REVIEWER on November 16, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"The Damned Season" is Carlo Lucarelli's second short mystery novel in the Commissario de Luca series. It has been well reviewed by Amazon readers already, but I will add my admiration for Lucarelli's taut writing style and ability to deliver an engaging narrative from page one. This is a masterful writer at work and well worth the reader's time.
Don't overlook the other two titles in the series -- "Carte Blanche" and "Via delle Oche."
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A. F. Martel on November 16, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you want uplifting stories with a happy ending , go elsewhere.
But if you want an engrossing story that will show you a very different view of Italy than Salvo Montalbano, read this.
This is Italy at the bitter end of World War II. And if the book is disjointed, confused and cynical, so was that period in Italy. The "good guys" mostly win at the end. Trouble is figuring out if they are "good".
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