When a body is found floating in a canal, strangely disfigured and with multiple stab wounds, Commissario Brunetti is called to investigate and is convinced he recognises the man from somewhere. However, with no identification except for the distinctive shoes the man was wearing, and no reports of people missing from the Venice area, the case ...
When a body is found floating in a canal, strangely disfigured and with multiple stab wounds, Commissario Brunetti is called to investigate and is convinced he recognises the man from somewhere. However, with no identification except for the distinctive shoes the man was wearing, and no reports of people missing from the Venice area, the case cannot progress. Brunetti soon realises why he remembers the dead man, and asks Signorina Elettra if she can help him find footage of a farmers' protest the previous autumn. But what was his involvement with the protest, and what does it have to do with his murder? Acting on the fragile lead, Brunetti and Inspector Vianello set out to uncover the man's identity. Their investigation eventually takes them to a slaughterhouse on the mainland, where they discover the origin of the crime, and the world of blackmail and corruption that surrounds it. Both a gripping case and a harrowing exploration of the dark side of Italy's meat industry, Donna Leon's latest novel is a compelling addition to the Brunetti series.
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If you have wanted to try vegetarianism, reading Chapter 19 of this novel might be just what you need. Otherwise, it is a rather grisly view of an Italian slaughterhouse (I really don't want to know if this happens in US slaughterhouses).
The book starts when a body of a man with Madelung's Disease comes to the morgue (google this under 'Madelung's Disease pictures' to see what a tragic malady this is). Before long, Brunetti finds out that the dead man was a veterinarian.
All the usual secondary characters are there adding to the mix of unique characters that inhabit Donna Leon's books. Vianello, Paola and Guido are the stalwart and normal people in a world that is becoming more confused (and crazy) all the time.
This is a somber novel; Leon stays off her political hobby-horse and concentrates on a single murder. It brings the awfulness and tragedy of this death in sharp focus. Because of Guido's reaction, I could feel the tremendous effort it must take to be a homicide detective -- Guido doesn't bounce back at the end of the day. When Paola wants to talk with Guido about an ethical problem she is facing, Guido tells her he doesn't have the strength to concentrate on her dilemma. This case has really gotten under his skin; I can't recall Guido ever being unwilling to discuss a problem with his wife.
Mar 20, 2014
Donna Leon / Guido Brunetti
As usual a wonderful read. The authors words make the story flow, keeping interest and stimulating the mind. The whole series are full of wonderful surprises of words and story which makes the reader hunger for more.
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