A truck crashes and spills its dangerous cargo on a treacherous road in the Italian Dolomite mountains. Meanwhile, in Santa Lucia, a prominent international lawyer is found dead aboard an intercity train.
Suspecting a connection between the two tragedies, Commissario Guido Brunetti digs deep for an answer, stumbling upon a seedy Venetian bar that holds the key to a crime network that reaches far beyond the laguna. But it will take another violent death in Venice before Brunetti and his colleagues begin to understand what is really going on.
Death in Venice: investigate more of Guido Brunetti's cases.
©1995 Donna Leon; (P)2009 BBC Audio
"Leon isn't well known is this country, but she should be. She's a superbly gifted writer whose stories are complex and filled with charm, humor, and intelligence." (Booklist)
Love the narration of this book, you can see the streets of Venice and Padua as the story is read. The book itself was well done, I was immersed in the story from the start. There is murder, human trafficking and stolen innocence. Step into the pages of Northern Italy for a short while.
I never regret purchasing a Brunetti novel, and always find them interesting and well worth the time. In this case, the issues are exceptionally painful and seamy, so I enjoyed this one a little less than the others, but it was still well worth the read. As usual, the characters are individual and enjoyable, as are the interactions.
As always, the sense of place is enjoyable without the mess that some authors make by trying to turn it into a travelogue. The atmosphere of Venice is distinctly with us but always in a natural way that blends with the plot progression.
AUDIO: David Colacci consistently does a good job. I sometimes wish he'd go slightly lighter on the accents, but on the whole he's excellent. He understands the ongoing characters very well and gives a true rendering of their conversations.
Retired "Okie" librarian & happy to have found Audible for good stories & staying in touch with new authors & books.
Leon's books are well written & enjoyable but with the audio book one gets the sound of Italian words & intonation in the bargain.
The setting in Venice & environs is intriguing. The juxtaposition of Commissario Brunetti's professional & private lives. The crimes of rape, murder, human trafficking are bad enough to need the balance of family life.
Even though Colacci has an American accent it is not distracting. He portrays the different characters convincingly & pronounces the Italian believably. I have enjoyed Colacci's other narrations, he is a professional.
A Venetian police mystery!
Leon captures the flavor of Italian life well for an American audience. The book did not have the feel of a translation. I don't think it needn't to be translated, as Donna Leon has lived abroad & especially in Italy for a number of years. I do enjoy translations for the local color they impart. With Leon's books she interprets that local color for the reader.
Audiobooks have literally changed my life. I now actually ENJOY doing mindless chores because they give me plenty of listening time!
A truck meets with a terrible accident in the snowy Dolomites, and spilling out of it's bowels among the cargo of wood are also strange mannequins... but the mannequins are bleeding, which must mean they are real women. The horror of this accident is only a small presage of more to come.
Commissario Guido Brunetti is put on the case of the murder of a prominent lawyer, shot dead on an intercity train. Then an accountant and business associate of the lawyer also turns up dead, and Brunetti starts suspecting the connection might be an international prostitution ring. His 14-year-old daughter Chiara offers her help as an apprentice investigator; she's been to school with the murdered lawyer's daughter and may be able to unearth some clues. But no one is prepared for the extent of the horror she uncovers in the process, least of all Chiara herself, and Brunetti can't forgive himself for unwittingly exposing his beloved daughter to such monstrous crimes.
I’ve read several novels in the series and knew that Leon tends to combine an insider's view of Venice and the comforts of the inspector's home life with the vilest of crimes and conspiracies, but the nature of one of the crimes committed against women in this particular instance were so evil that I was quite shocked. But in the end, Brunetti is a man with a conscience and in comforting his daughter, he also comforts his reader; heinous crimes won't go away, but love and kindness are also here to stay. Recommended, but this ones necessitates a solid stomach.
While the mystery kept me interested, some of the interview scenes were very tedious (ex/ "Why did you do that?" "Do what?" "That." "This?" "No, that.") The family scenes seemed like unnecessary filler.
Realism is important, but the lack of justice in a murder mystery breaks an implicit agreement with the reader that the killer will be caught and crime and corruption will be overcome, if just for one fictional case. In this case, the true criminals were not brought to justice. One of the reasons I don't care for many of the male mystery writers (especially the Scandinavian authors) is the tendency toward sexual violence which propels the hunt for justice. The last 2 Donna Leon mysteries I have read have also fallen into this category. I do not want to read about rape and torture in an escapist novel.
Does not do so well with the 14 year old daughter, and Guido sounded much older than the character in the novel.
I wasn't sure I was going to like this book, as police procedurals are not typically my favorite type of mystery. However, Ms. Leon has a talent for making her characters seem very real, and I was especially charmed by Commissario Brunetti, as well as his wife and daughter. While I listened to this book, I could envision it as if I were watching a film. The narrator brings a real Italian flavor to the story. The plot holds your attention, doesn't necessarily resolve like one would hope, but that keeps you thinking even after finishing the book. I will definitely want to read/listen to more of the Brunetti series!
I liked that there was more involvement with Guido's daughter.
David Colacci is a good reader. I like hearing what I assume is correct pronunciation of Italian, and its various dialects.
Donna Leon's Venetian police procedurals have long been on my favorites list and I would read anything that stars Guido Brunetti.
This edition is a bit of a change as much of the story does not occur in Venice - as many would guess from the introductory road accident. It also visits some very unpleasant issues - something which does not become clear until late in the book. Unlike most in this series, the squeamish index shoots to the top in one scene - be forewarned if violent sex bothers you (not graphic but violent).
But it does feature my favorite cast of characters and give a glimpse into the everyday life of a Venetian family (Venetian, mind you, not Italian).
David Colacci is a fabulous narrator for this series - he IS Guido Brunetti to my ears.
I would not recommend this as a first read in the series - but if you are already addicted, this should keep you satisfied.
What I love about this whole series is the way it colors a culture with native nuances and viewpoint while at the same time weaving a wonderful murder mystery tale.
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