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Publisher's Summary

Things are not going well for Inspector Salvo Montalbano. His relationship with Livia is once again on the rocks and - acutely aware of his age - he is beginning to grow weary of the endless violence he encounters. Then a young woman is found dead, her face half shot off and only a tattoo of a sphinx moth giving any hint of her identity. The tattoo links her to three similarly marked girls - all victims of the underworld sex trade - who have been rescued from the Mafia night-club circuit by a prominent Catholic charity. The problem is, Montalbano's inquiries elicit an outcry from the Church and the three other girls are all missing.

ANDREA CAMILLERI is an international best-selling author. He lives in Rome.

©2006 by Selerio editore via Siracusa; translation 2009 by Stephen Sartarelli (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Sublime and darkly humorous....Camilleri balances his hero's personal and professional challenges perfectly and leaves the reader eager for more." ( Publishers Weekly)

What listeners say about The Wings of the Sphinx

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The Sphinx moth tattoo

Just goes to show that policework is little changed regardless of country. And SOME policemen are too creative by half! This is a good thing!
Inspector Montalbano works for a jurisdiction in Sicily and knows how to sidestep both his superior and nearby jurisdictions. He also knows how to script and act (with the able assist of his fellows) to get to the bottom of things. And those fellows! Each is useful in his own way, including the one who is comic relief by way of indecipherable handwriting and total mangling of names.
The initial crime is murder, but there are many more woven into this tale. Like Colombo, all is solved in the end, except, perhaps, in his personal life. The laughs are low key, but still make for laugh-out-loud moments. The publisher's summary will give an overview without spoilers. I plan to begin with #1 and devour this whole series!
Many thanks to Stephen Sartarelli for making this book and series available to English speakers!
I like the the way Grover Gardner interprets the characters. Italian speakers may not approve of a Brooklyn accent for one of the police, but it provides North Americans with added fun.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

This one review does it all for me.

Camilleri is wonderful, so understated, such humor, such a fun introduction to Sicily. Buy this, buy all of them.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing translation!

Both the translator and the narrator of this Italian detective story should win awards. A delightful listen with abundant humour and no slight insight into human nature.

1 person found this helpful