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In his 15th outing (after The Age of Doubt), Inspector Montalbano is distracted by a bird's odd behavior and discovers that his colleague Fazio has gone missing. [See Prepub Alert, 8/20/12.] (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
There's not quite as much careening chaos in Salvo Montalbano's latest adventure as there was in The Age of Doubt (2012), but that's not to say matters move logically from crime to investigation to solution. Not hardly. That's not how the impetuous Sicilian police inspector operates, and frankly, we wouldn't want it any other way. The charm of a Montalbano mystery derives in large part from the way the inspector's helter-skelter approach to investigation mirrors the inherent messiness of life. Rather than standing on shore and observing the swirling riptides of human behavior, Montalbano dives right into the murky waters and lets himself be thrown about in the current until the passing flotsam and jetsam form a pattern. So it goes here, in a typically convoluted case that begins with a seagull's dance of death and moves quickly to the disappearance of Montalbano's friend and colleague, Fazio, and zooms from there to a smuggling scheme, a honey trap, and a particularly ugly murder. By the time Montalbano climbs out of the muck this time, he's a bit more battered than usual, but that's nothing a very large bowl of caponata won't fix.--Ott, Bill Copyright 2010 Booklist