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The Monster of Florence (A Florentine Mystery) Hardcover – October 1, 2013
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Intrusion: A Novel
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"One of Nabb's darkest novels, almost shocking in its disenchanted acknowledgment of human brutality."
—The New York Times Book Review
"The late Magdalen Nabb never wrote a bad book.... She’s well worth discovering by a new generation of readers... [Monster of Florence] is one of the best of her works and readers can revel in the streets, sounds, smells of Florence."
—The Globe and Mail
“It is so good to walk with [Magdalen Nabb] through the animated streets of Florence, with its carabinieri, its ordinary people, its little trattorie and even its noisy tourists. It's all so alive, you can hear the noises, smell the smells, see that morning mist on the fast flowing Arno…. Bravissimo!”
"Monster is powerful in its indirection and its presentation in a fictional context of the facts of a real and celebrated case.... It's both a very effective crime novel and something more than a crime novel."
—Glenn Harper, International Noir Fiction
"A haunting thriller where past and present collide, where ambition brutalizes those who have most need of compassion and where lies are often more credible than truth."
"Nabb's account of the details is freshly horrifying.... The vicious, incestuous suspect is so vivid on the page that the reader feels the need of a shower after each of his many appearances."
—Donna Leon for the Sunday Times
“Fans who mourned [Nabb’s] death in 2007 will want this mystery.”
"Nabb’s death, in 2007, left a serious hole in the roster of A-list mystery writers, and the publication of a posthumous novel starring her series hero, Marshal Guarnaccia, of the Florence Carabinieri, is a welcome event for all fans of international crime fiction."
Praise for Magdalen Nabb
"It takes a writer as good as Magdalen Nabb to remind us how subtle the art of the mystery can be."
—New York Times
Top Customer Reviews
Disclosure: I received this book as part of a Goodreads giveaway on the premise that I would review it.
This book had some likable qualities. Guarnaccia is a quirky, strange character at times, but a main character that can keep you interested. I liked the way the author displayed his thought processes and his personality.
One thing that threw me off a little in this story was the amount of suspects there were. I never really felt that I could connect well because just when I had an idea of whodunnit, there was another person trampling their way into the suspect pool. I do understand that in serial killer cases there often is a wide suspect list, but for this book, I just found it difficult to follow.
I thought it interesting, not necessarily good or bad but just interesting that the main character's dreams were so involved in the story. I almost wondered if he were going the psychic route for a while.
I did love the descriptions of Florence. Magdalen Nabb really made the setting an easy one to admire. There is some pretty graphic material involved in this novel, so if that bothers you then you should be forewarned that it may not be for you.
Overall, this was different. It wasn't what I had expected and often those are the books that I remember later.
This review is based on a paper copy that I received as a first reads winner from Goodreads and the publisher.
Delight and satisfy, this is what the avid Guarnaccia fan can expect in the countless bits and hints concerning the Marshal's psyche. They are interspersed throughout the book and are illuminating and priceless. I found the most angst producing moment in the book is when the Marshal misinterprets the remarks he overhears his superior and friend making about the reason he was chosen for this plum assignment without spoiling it , it occurs approximately 75% through the book. There are the usual problems and fears the Marshal has about his career which make he oh so human. However, a caveat, if you have not read at least one previous book in the series you will not appreciate it . Hence my claim that this should not be part of the series but an addendum.
Now of course we come to the problem that I have with the book and that is structure. I find the sections of past police reports to be not illuminating and indeed a hindrance to the flow of the story line. The reasoning for them seems to be only to cause convolutions. The cast of characters is also confusing to say the least but I realize that it does require to pay more attention to detail then a reader might want to put out ( call me slothful). Also unpleasant and evil as these sundry characters are, they do not really grab and assault you attentions. The leitmotif of a stolen painting and its outcome seem a little contrived but I found it to be satisfying since I come to this book with having read the entire series. As I said, nothing really new here but an enjoyable trip through the world of Marshal Guarnaccia.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Agh, the Marshall uses his dogged determination to unveil the monster. This monster perpetrated 16 inhuman murders and mutilations. Read morePublished 8 months ago by TAJ
A good page turner. Important to get the latest edition, with the Amanda Knox chapter.Published 12 months ago by Kiddie Lit Grandma
If you like Nabb's writing, which I do, you will enjoy this book as well as all the others in the series. Read morePublished 13 months ago by madam queen
Love this guy. This book is a little slower than others in the series.Published 13 months ago by Barbara Koester
Another excellent Magdalen Nabb mystery. I think Nabb is very underrated -- perhaps because her mysteries are more literary, more intelligent, than many others. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Charlie
This novel was written about the serial killer that plagued Florence over a period of 10-12 years. Ms. Read morePublished on June 5, 2014 by Michael R. Larsen
fascinating story about famous serial killer in florence area. Unfortunately it is a long and tedious tale with the lead character being almost clinically depressed. Read morePublished on March 27, 2014 by joe
We have always enjoyed her books, and while we enjoyed Monster of Florence, we would rate some of her previous books more highly. We will miss this talent!!!Published on March 7, 2014 by JML from PA