Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Blood from a Stone

Blood from a Stone by Donna Leon
(a Commissario Guido Brunnetti Mystery)

Rating: 2 Stars

I was looking forward to blissfully soaking myself in a good old-fashioned cloak and dagger novel, but initially found this one a little tepid. More used to the rat-a-tat pace of the American crime caper, or the sinister undercurrents of the English countryside, it took me a while to get used to the well-read, genial hero of this Venetian mystery.

Guido Brunnetti, devoted family man and lover of good food, is a far cry from the stereotypical hard-boiled, macho cop hero. The story is well written, with a thought-provoking plot that takes time to unravel.

My main quibble is that our hero is reduced to being a frustrated witness when the final pieces of the puzzle fall into place. Neither he, nor the reader, has the satisfaction of declaring whole-heartedly, “Case closed!” Still, I think the series holds promise. Next time, I might try one of the better-reviewed books of Ms. Leon’s like, “Doctored Evidence” or “Uniform Justice”. Until then, Ciao Guido!

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