- 34,99 lei
Venice, 1734. Neglecting his vocal practice for dubious pleasures, singer Tito Amato finds himself demoted to secondary roles and overshadowed by a visiting star. When the murder of scene painter Luca Cavalieri threatens to close the opera house, Tito jumps at the chance to regain his worth by finding the killer.
Suspicion falls on members of a Jewish ghetto family that produces masks for the theater. But Tito discovers a mysterious veil that leads him in a different direction. Assisted by Augustus Rumbolt, an Englishman making his Grand Tour, Tito is soon on the trail of Dr. Palantinus, a masked figure who heads a secret society that charges exorbitant fees to partake of its enticing rituals.
But who is behind the mask of Palantinus? Tito's search for the answer pierces the treacherous depths of a city dedicated to masquerade and pleasure, where ancient hatreds thrive, cultures uneasily coexist, and where opera is the stuff of daily life.
Set in 1730s Venice, Myers's second baroque mystery skillfully guides the reader past the dangers of fame to the nature of music and love, fulfilling the promise of her well-received debut, Interrupted Aria (2004). At the Teatro San Marco, soprano castrato Tito Amato is struggling with his demotion to lesser roles when the strangled body of Luca Cavalieri, a talented if unscrupulous set designer and painter, turns up in a canal. Suspicion points to his lover, Liya Del'Vecchio, a "Jewess" whom Tito falls for on sight. When the opera company director asks Tito to investigate Cavalieri's murder, he's only too glad to comply. Accompanied by Augustus "Gussie" Rumbolt, a younger son of English nobility on the grand tour, he explores the first European ghetto. All foreigners are suspect and restricted in the fading sun of Venetian trading pre-eminence, but only Jews are locked up at night in the old ironworks. When a rabble-rousing, pseudonymous pamphlet accuses Liya's cousin of the murder and poisoning wells, Tito gets mixed up in necromancy and secret societies as well. Myers provides an insightful and tender look at how those who are different castrati, women, Jews were treated at the time, as well as a wonderful view of elegant, decadent, nothing-is-as-it-seems-from-behind-the-masque Venice.