The Snack Thief , etc.). When a
 

The Smell of the Night

Andrea Camilleri, Author, Stephen Sartarelli, Translator
Andrea Camilleri, Author, Stephen Sartarelli, Translator , trans. from the Italian by Stephen Sartarelli. Penguin $12 (229p) ISBN 978-0-14-303620-3
Reviewed on: 10/24/2005
Release date: 11/01/2005

An intricate plot and a large cast of memorable characters help lift the sixth Inspector Montalbano mystery from Camilleri (The Snack Thief , etc.). When a ragioniere (financier) disappears with millions of lire after defrauding many investors in a pyramid scheme, the middle-aged Sicilian detective uses both official and unofficial channels, as the mood takes him, to form, test and eventually prove his own theories. The fun is in the process, as Montalbano flouts the law on occasion, tweaks his superiors, badgers his associates and wheedles information from various sources. The endearing inspector is, by his own admission, both glutton and gourmand, and the meals prepared for him both at home and in restaurants are large, frequent and lavish. Sly humor, an eye for beauty, a disdain for clichés and fools plus a first-rate intelligence make him formidable both as a detective and as a companion. (Dec.)

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