Saturday, February 26, 2011

Review: A Question of Belief

Author: Donna Leon
Publisher/Format: BBC Audiobooks America, 9 hrs, 12 min, 320 pg equivalent
Narrator: David Colacci
Characters: Commissario Guido Brunetti, Signorina Eletra; Paola Brunetti,  Inspectore Vionella
Subject: corruption in the courts, murder
Setting: Venice in the summer
Series: Commissario Brunetti mysteries
Genre: police procedural
Source: public library audiobook download

Commissario Brunetti's loyal assistant,  Lorenzo Vianello, has come to Guido for help in dis-entangling his elderly Aunt who has fallen under the grips of a charasmatic faith healer, who is operating just on the edge of the law.  Brunetti ruminates how to handle this unofficial problem, but cannot find an answer.  In the meantime, summer has descended on Venice with a vengeance, and Guido and Paola are actually getting away for a vacation.  The merciless heat in Venice has sent them fleeing, along with thousands of others, to the mountains in the north, where they have visions of taking long walks wearing sweaters, sitting before a fire in the evening,  and sleeping under eiderdowns.

Unfortunately, Brunetti does not even make it to his ultimate mountain retreat before his telefonino rings calling him back to solve a murder.  Vianello also is recalled, and together they slog through the heat, trying to find out why a mid-level civil servant working in the courts and living with him mother, has been found murdered in the piazza of his residence. While solving that, they are led to more clues about how to solve Auntie's problem.

The book is vintage Leon....good characters, lots of twists, suspects, and Venetian logic (or lack thereof) leading the reader to the conclusion.  As with many of her books, the ending will not please all the readers, but it is one that is realistic and very much in keeping with the characters in her series..

I think there are only 3 in this series I haven't read (or listened to), and her newest one is coming out in March or April.  This never disappoint.  The characters, the sense of place, the descriptions of foods, church bells, vaparettos, and sunsets all serve up a 5 star reading experience.

1 comment:

  1. is it a series that you should read in order...because I am not sure I have enough time to start another series at the beginning.
    but I should read something set in Venice, since I hope to be there in May...


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