Aurelio Zen's newest adventure is a delirious combination of the deadly serious and the seriously comic. Here is Mozart's opera turned on its head to test the faithfulness of men and the stamina of Michael Dibdin's unusually serious-minded police officer, as he becomes the unwitting stage manager for this masterful interpretation of murder, mayhem ...
Aurelio Zen's newest adventure is a delirious combination of the deadly serious and the seriously comic. Here is Mozart's opera turned on its head to test the faithfulness of men and the stamina of Michael Dibdin's unusually serious-minded police officer, as he becomes the unwitting stage manager for this masterful interpretation of murder, mayhem, and the mysteries of love.
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Book did not come up to the standard of the Zen series of three on PBS. The actual novel was in perfect condition.
Oct 4, 2007
mystery as farce
Mr. Dibdin is a truly gifted writer and master of dialogue, not to belittle his exceptional talents in descibing human nature in the context of farce. This is one of those rare books that I and others have discovered needs to be read twice to appreciate all that is packed in what purports to be mystery. Highly recommended.
Publishers Weekly, 1997-04-07 In this spry new mystery constructed along comically operatic lines, Italian copper Aurelio Zen (Dead Lagoon, etc.) finds that his quest for the simpler life leads to a new beat in Naples and to a series of convoluted criminal conundrums. A garbage truck prowls the streets, slaughtering several notable organized crime figures; a mystery man posing as an American sailor is involved in a fracas at the port; and ownership of a pirated software game is called into question. Zen meanwhile stumbles into a whole new identity for himself and gives aid to the handsome widow of a mobster, who is anxious to rid herself of her two pretty young daughters' lowlife suitors. Zen employs the most alluring hookers he can find to entice the dutiful young men away. There are a wealth of cute moments: Zen running stark naked through the widow's apartment; Zen wildly extemporizing his way out of trouble with a superior officer. The operatic notions and a general absence of realism allow Dibdin free reign for flights of fancy and copious coincidence. Dibdin (Dark Spectre), a supremely skilled author able to fashion the mystery form into an endless series of deft variations, demonstrates an especially witty facet of his rich talent here. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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