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'Donna Leon's appreciation of her adopted city's sublime yet fragile magnificence is as fresh (and invigorating) today as it was when Death at La Fenice was published in 1992. However, her anger at the damage caused by tourism and pollution has grown stronger over the years ... Should anyone still doubt that Leon is a superb novelist, let them consider the scene in which Guido gently questions a woman during the last few minutes of her life. You can feel the tension, fear, horror - and wonder.' The Times
A New York Times Bestseller
'They killed him. It was bad money.' A dying hospice patient gasps these cryptic words about her recently-deceased husband. Brunetti softly promises he will look into what appears to be a private family tragedy. He discovers that her husband worked for a company that monitored the cleanliness of Venice's water supply and that he had died in a motorcycle accident.
Distracted briefly by Vice Questore Patta's obsession with youth crime in Venice, Brunetti turns to the remarkable research skills of Patta's secretary, Signora Elettra Zorzi. With her help, Brunetti comes to realize the perilous meaning in the dying woman's accusation and the threat it reveals to the health of the entire region.
'Atmospheric, clever, witty and amusing. If I were only allowed to read one crime series again it would be that of Donna Leon.' The Times
At the start of bestseller Leon's thought-provoking 29th mystery featuring Venetian Commissario Guido Brunetti (after 2019's Unto Us a Son Is Given), Brunetti and his colleague, Commissario Claudia Griffoni, are called to a hospice at the request of 38-year-old Benedetta Toso, who's dying of cancer. Though Benedetta isn't fully lucid, Brunetti and Griffoni learn that she suspects foul play in the recent death of her husband, Vittorio Fadalto, a water distribution technician employed by the firm Spattuto Acqua. Vittorio drowned when his motorcycle went off the road, yet he had a reputation for careful behavior when it came to safety. His wife hints that Vittorio was involved in something dishonest, and the expert online sleuthing by a colleague of Brunetti's uncovers disturbing financial transactions. Brunetti sets out to examine employee activities at Spattuto Acqua, which is charged with maintaining the integrity of Venice's water supply. As usual, Leon adroitly portrays the complex questions of what constitutes justice and the sad consequences that can result from its pursuit. This long-running series shows no sign of losing steam.