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A conductor succumbs to cyanide at the famed Venice opera house, in the first mystery in the New York Times–bestselling, award-winning series. During intermission at the famed La Fenice opera house in Venice, Italy, a notoriously difficult and widely disliked German conductor is poisoned—and suspects abound. Guido Brunetti, a native Venetian, sets out to unravel the mystery behind the high-profile murder. To do so, he calls on his knowledge of Venice, its culture, and its dirty politics. Along the way, he finds the crime may have roots going back decades—and that revenge, corruption, and even Italian cuisine may play a role. “One of the most exquisite and subtle detective series ever.” —The Washington Post “A brilliant writer . . . an immensely likable police detective who takes every murder to heart.” —The New York Times Book Review
The celebrated opera house, La Fenice, has seen its share of death. But nothing so horrific and violent as that of conductor, Maestro Helmut Wellauer, poisoned during a performance of La Traviata. Commissario of Police, Guido Brunetti, has to step behind the lights into the bitchy world of opera to investigate.
The New York Times–bestselling series continues with the murder of an American soldier in Venice: “This is definitely an author to watch (Kirkus Reviews). Early one morning, Commissario Guido Brunetti of the Venice police confronts a grisly sight when the body of a young man is fished out of a fetid canal. All clues point to a violent mugging, but for Brunetti the motive of robbery seems altogether too convenient. When something discovered in the victim’s apartment suggests the existence of a high-level conspiracy, Brunetti becomes convinced that somebody, somewhere, is taking great pains to provide a ready-made solution to the crime. Rich with atmosphere and marvelous plotting, Death in a Strange Country is a superb novel in Donna Leon’s chilling Venetian mystery series. Praise for Donna Leon and the Commissario Brunetti Mysteries “One of the best international crime writers is Donna Leon, and her Commissario Guido Brunetti tales set in Venice are at the apex of continental thrillers.” —Rocky Mountain News “Leon’s books shimmer in the grace of their setting and are warmed by the charm of her characters.” —The New York Times Book Review “Brunetti . . . long ago joined the ranks of the classic fictional detectives.” —Evening Standard “Commissario Brunetti, most charismatic current Euro-cop, uncovers deadly ants’ nest of corruption. A highly accomplished, scary read.” —The Guardian
The New York Times–bestselling series and its Italian detective explore the seedy underworld of Venice: “Procedural writing at its best” (The Washington Post). Commissario Guido Brunetti’s hopes for a refreshing family holiday in the mountains are once again dashed when a gruesome discovery is made in Marghera—a body so badly beaten the face is completely unrecognizable. Brunetti searches Venice for someone who can identify the corpse but is met with a wall of silence. He then receives a telephone call from a contact who promises some tantalizing information. And before the night is out, Brunetti is confronting yet another appalling, and apparently senseless, death. “[One of] the real charms of this series [is] the endearing character of Brunetti and his compassionate insights into the heart of Venice and the soul of its people. . . . Truly, a refreshing hero.” —The New York Times Book Review “Despite the gruesome way in which this murder, and subsequent ones, take place, it’s really a cheery, breezy mystery, filled with good humor and adventure. The ending can only leave the reader waiting avidly for the next time we meet Brunetti and his lively friends and cohorts.” —Pittsburgh Post-Gazette “Leon delivers her plot in an unassuming, graceful and beautifully paced prose that hides its measured elegance.” —The Washington Post “One of the most appealing of recent detectives, Brunetti stars in a case that brings out his canniness and his compassion—and shows his creator spreading her wings more powerfully than ever.” —Kirkus Reviews “Richly evocative. . . . Venice takes on a deep noir tint in Leon’s latest well-crafted work.” —Publishers Weekly
An opera singer is terrified by an obsessive fan in this “stunning” mystery in the New York Times–bestselling series set in Venice, Italy (Library Journal, starred review). Years ago, Guido Brunetti cleared the opera star Flavia Petrelli in the murder of a renowned conductor. Now the soprano is returning to Venice—and its celebrated opera house, La Fenice—to sing the lead in Tosca. Brunetti and his wife, Paola, attend an early performance, and Flavia receives a standing ovation. Back in her dressing room, she finds bouquets of yellow roses—too many roses. Every surface of the room is covered with them. An anonymous fan has been showering Flavia with these beautiful gifts in London, St. Petersburg, Amsterdam, and now Venice, but she no longer feels flattered, only frightened. When she confesses her alarm—and then a singer who has caught Flavia’s attention is savagely attacked—Brunetti begins to think that Flavia’s fears are justified in ways neither of them imagined, and he must enter into the psyche of an obsessive fan . . . From a New York Times–bestselling and Silver Dagger Award–winning author, this is “one of the most exquisite and subtle detective series ever” (The Washington Post). “Another provocative addition to a fine series, certain to appeal to aficionados of profound literary mysteries such as Louise Penny’s How the Light Gets In.” —Library Journal, starred review
A New York Times bestseller: The police investigate the death of a veterinarian in Venice, Italy in this “swiftly paced” mystery (The Seattle Times). When the body of man is found in a canal, damaged by the tides, carrying no wallet, and wearing only one shoe, Guido Brunetti has little to work with. No local has filed a missing-person report, and no hotel guests have disappeared. The autopsy shows he had suffered from a rare, disfiguring disease. A shopkeeper tells Brunetti that the man had a kindly way with animals. Finally, the victim is identified as a much-loved veterinarian—and Brunetti’s quest to find the killer will take him on a harrowing journey . . . “All her trademark strengths shine in this swiftly paced, sophisticated tale of greed versus ethics.” —The Seattle Times “Written with such delicacy and emotional force that we can’t help but be reminded of Greek tragedy.” —Booklist, starred review
There is little violent crime in Venice, a serenely beautiful floating city of mystery and magic, history and decay. But the evil that does occasionally rear its head is the jurisdiction of Guido Brunetti, the suave, urbane vice-commissario of police and a genius at detection. Now all of his admirable abilities must come into play in the deadly affair of Maestro Helmut Wellauer, a world-renowned conductor who died painfully from cyanide poisoning during an intermission at La Fenice. But as the investigation unfolds, a chilling picture slowly begins to take shape—a detailed portrait of revenge painted with vivid strokes of hatred and shocking depravity. And the dilemma for Guido Brunetti will not be finding a murder suspect, but rather narrowing the choices down to one. . . .
“A smart and stylish fast-paced case of intrigue and corruption” in the Venetian-set, New York Times–bestselling mystery series (Los Angeles Times). After a wealthy elderly woman is found brutally murdered in her Venetian apartment, the police suspect her maid, who has disappeared and is heading for her native Romania. But when it becomes clear the maid could not have had time to kill the old woman before catching her train, Guido Brunetti decides—unofficially—to take on the case himself. As his wife reads about the seven deadly sins, Brunetti realizes that this is probably not a crime motivated by greed—rather, the motive may have more to do with the temptations of lust. But perhaps Brunetti is following a false trail and thinking of the wrong sin altogether . . . “The detective’s humane police work is disarming, and his ambles through the city are a delight; but it is this peculiar insistence on turning every case into a morality tale that gives Leon’s fiction its subtlety and substance and makes us follow Brunetti wherever we must—even into the sea.” —The New York Times Book Review “Holds together as an elegant puzzle, as a character study and as a story of an officer’s need to reclaim truth in all its complexities from those who want to find easy answers to life’s, and death’s, perplexing mysteries.” —The Washington Post Book World “A compelling and intricate series of events as convoluted and intricate as the canals of Venice itself . . . Another expert mystery.” —The Baltimore Sun
The New York Times–bestselling author of Unto Us a Son Is Given continues “one of the most exquisite and subtle detective series ever” (The Washington Post). When a dying hospice patient gasps that her husband was murdered over “bad money,” Commissario Brunetti softly promises he and his colleague, Claudia Griffoni, will look into what initially appears to be a private family tragedy. They discover that the man had worked in the field, collecting samples of contamination for a company that measures the cleanliness of Venice’s water supply, and that he had recently died in a mysterious motorcycle accident. Piecing together the tangled threads, Brunetti comes to realize the perilous meaning in the woman’s accusation and the threat it reveals to the health of the entire region. But justice in this case proves to be ambiguous, as Brunetti is reminded it can be when he reads Aeschylus’s classic play The Eumenides. Praise for Donna Leon’s Commissario Brunetti Mysteries “[Leon] has never become perfunctory, never failed to give us vivid portraits of people and of Venice, never lost her fine, disillusioned indignation.” —Ursula K. LeGuin, author of Dancing at the Edge of the World “You become so wrapped up in these compelling characters. . . . Each one is better than the last.” —Louise Erdrich, winner of the National Book Award for Fiction “Leon’s Venetian mysteries never disappoint, calling up the romantic sights and sounds of La Serenissima even as they acquaint us with the practical matters that concern the city’s residents.” —The New York Times Book Review “The sophisticated but still moral Brunetti, with his love of food and his loving family, proves a worthy custodian of timeless values and verities.” —The Wall Street Journal
New York Times Bestseller: Two injured, unconscious American women are found in Venice, Italy, leading a police detective down a dark path: “A splendid read.” —BookPage In his many years as a commissario, Guido Brunetti has seen all manner of crime and known intuitively how to navigate the various pathways in his native city, Venice, to discover the person responsible. In this novel in Silver Dagger Award-winning series, he faces a heinous crime committed outside his jurisdiction. He is drawn in innocently enough: two young American women have been badly injured in a boating accident, joyriding in the Laguna with two young Italians. But Brunetti’s curiosity is aroused by the men’s behavior. Why did they run off after bringing the victims to the hospital if the injuries were accidental? As Brunetti and his colleague, Claudia Griffoni, investigate, they discover that one of the young men works for someone rumored to be involved in more sinister nighttime activities in the Laguna. To get to the bottom of what proves to be a gut-wrenching case, Brunetti needs to enlist the help of both the Carabinieri and the Guardia di Costiera. Determining how much trust he and Griffoni can put in these unfamiliar colleagues adds to the difficulty of solving a peculiarly horrible crime—whose perpetrators are technologically brilliant and ruthlessly organized . . . “Highly atmospheric . . . Brunetti continues to delight.” —Library Journal “[An] endlessly enjoyable series.” —The New York Times Book Review