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Titre : A Question of Belief SIGNED COPY
Éditeur : William Heinemann, London
Date d'édition : 2010
Reliure : Hardcover
Etat du livre : Fine
Etat de la jaquette : Fine
Signé : Signed by Author
Edition : First Edition.
Not price clipped and without insctiptions. First Printing SIGNED by Author on title page without dedication. N° de réf. du libraire 20892
As Venice experiences a debilitating heatwave, Commissario Brunetti escapes the city to spend time with his family. For Ispettore Vianello, however, the weather is the last thing on his mind. It appears his aunt has become obsessed with horoscopes and has been withdrawing large amounts of money from the family business. Not knowing what to do, he consults Brunetti and asks permission to trail her.
Meanwhile, Brunetti receives a visit from a friend who works at the Commune. It seems that discrepancies have been occurring at the Courthouse involving a judge and an usher with a flawless track record. Intrigued, Brunetti asks Signorina Elettra to find out what she can while he's away.
When news reaches Brunetti that the usher from the Courthouse has been viciously murdered, he returns to investigate. But why would someone want a good man dead, and what might his death have to do with the Courthouse discrepancies?
Critique: Some authors -- even the best -- can show varying levels of consistency in their books, and sometimes deliver less than their top work. Which is why Donna Leon is considered one of the most reliable practitioners in the field -- so consistently high is the standard of her books. One might imagine by now that she would be repeating herself in her highly entertaining series of novels featuring Commissario Guido Brunetti, but there is little evidence of that. Leon, an American expat who has chosen to relocate herself to Venice (where she is friendly with such talented people as the singer Cecilia Bartoli), utilises her knowledge of her adopted city to great effect. As in the latest outing for Brunetti, A Question of Belief.
Venice is sweltering in a heat wave, and Leon's doughty copper is looking forward to getting away from the city and relaxing with his family in the relative cool of the mountains. But his colleague Ispettore Vianello has other things on his mind than the weather; his aunt, seemingly befuddled by an obsessive belief in horoscopes and astrology, has been siphoning off considerable amount of cash from the family business. Vianello asks Brunetti if it would be possible to trail her -- and this unorthodox investigation points the detectives in the direction of one Stefano Gorini. This beneficiary of the aunt?s largesse is not everything that he seems.
At the same time, it appears that there have been irregularities in the courts. At the Tribulane, an usher with a previously spotless reputation, Fontana, has been involved in suspicious business with a judge, Luisa Coltellini -- it appears that justice has a price. And then Fontana is brutally killed. Brunetti and Vianello now have more than enough problems to keep them even busier than usual.
Apart from the usual impeccable plotting, there is the customarily sharp evocation of Venice (something, of course, that Leon can do with one hand tied behind her back). This is not, perhaps, the most sheerly entertaining in the series -- but with the issues of faith and corruption it addresses, it is one of the most provocative. --Barry Forshaw
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