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In the twenty-seventh novel in Donna Leon’s bestselling crime series, a suspicious accident leads Commissario Guido Brunetti to uncover a longstanding scam with disturbing unintended consequences.

A suspicious accident draws Brunetti into Venice's underworld - with unintended, disturbing consequences...

When important information is leaked from inside the Venetian Questura, Commissario Guido Brunetti is entrusted with the task of uncovering which of his colleagues is responsible. But before Brunetti can begin his investigation, he is surprised by the appearance in his office of a friend of his wife’s, who is fearful that her son is using drugs. A few weeks later, Tullio Gasparini, the woman’s husband, is found unconscious with a serious head injury at the foot of a bridge, and Brunetti is drawn to pursue a possible connection to the boy’s behaviour. But the truth is not straightforward.

Following various contradictory leads, Brunetti navigates his way through a world of mysterious informants, underground deals and secret longstanding scam networks, all the while growing ever more impressed by the intuition of his fellow Commissario, Claudia Griffoni, and by the endless resourcefulness of Signorina Elettra, Vice-Questore Patta’s secretary and gate-keeper.

With Gasparini’s condition showing no signs of improvement, and his investigations leading nowhere, Brunetti is steadied by the embrace of his own family and by his passion for the classics. He turns to Sophocles’s Antigone in an attempt to understand the true purpose of justice, and, in its light, he is forced to consider the terrible consequences to which the actions of a tender heart can lead.

Reviews

The Venetian settings are en­chanting and Commissario Guido Brunetti’s investigative methods are drolly amusing. But it’s the living, bleeding humanity of the characters that makes Donna Leon’s police procedurals so engaging … Tagging along after this sleuth is a wonderful way to see Venice like a native, especially since Leon takes care to give us precise directions for his routes.

New York Times Book Review

Formats & editions

  • Trade Paperback

    9781785151965

    April 16, 2018

    William Heinemann

    RRP $29.99

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    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Paperback

    9781787461093

    October 1, 2018

    Arrow

    RRP $19.99

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    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
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    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Hardback

    9781785151958

    April 15, 2018

    William Heinemann

    RRP $49.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781473559202

    April 5, 2018

    Cornerstone Digital

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
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Extract

1

Having left the apartment smack on time so as to arrive at the Questura on time for a meeting with his superior, Brunetti found himself seated towards the rear of a Number One vaporetto, glancing idly through a copy of that morning’s Gazzettino. Subconsciously aware that they had just left la Salute, starting to cross to Vallaresso, he heard the boat’s motor slip into reverse. A Venetian system of batlike echolocation told him they were still some distance from the left bank of the canal, so the sound of the boat reversing was out of place: perhaps the Captain was trying to avoid something in the water ahead of them.

Brunetti lowered the paper, looked up, and saw nothing. Or, more accurately, he saw no farther than a sober grey wall he recognized instantly as an approaching bank of fog. It was hard to believe his eyes, so clear had the sky been when he’d left his home twenty minutes before. While he had been reading about the latest failure of the MOSE floodgates to function – after more than thirty years of plans and peculation – someone appeared to have draped a thick grey cloth in front of the vaporetto.

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Also by Donna Leon

Earthly Remains
The Waters of Eternal Youth
Falling in Love
By Its Cover
The Golden Egg
The Jewels of Paradise
Venetian Curiosities
Beastly Things
Handel's Bestiary
Drawing Conclusions
A Question of Belief
A Taste of Venice
Death in a Strange Country
About Face
The Girl of His Dreams
Suffer the Little Children
Through a Glass Darkly
Blood From A Stone
Death at La Fenice
Doctored Evidence
Uniform Justice
Wilful Behaviour
A Sea Of Troubles
Friends In High Places

Recommendations

The Thirst
Make Me
Hades
The Girl on the Train
The Store
Don't Let Go
A Stranger in the House
I Am Pilgrim
The Curious Incident of the Dog In the Night-time
The Word Is Murder
The President is Missing
Fifty Fifty
The Girl Who Was Taken
The Lost Symbol
Orphan X
The Escape Room
Catch-22: 50th Anniversary Edition
Baby Teeth
Mine
I Know a Secret