The Marshal and the Madwoman

Magdalen Nabb, Author Scribner Book Company $16.95 (223p) ISBN 978-0-684-18984-0
As in the previous entries in Nabb's Florentine series, the mystery here is incidental to the story of people infused with life by the sensitive author. The sixth case assigned to Marshal Guarnacci of the Pitti Palace brings him to a working-class community where a former mental patient, Clementina, lies dead after a clumsy attempt to fake her suicide. A poor woman, helped by neighbors, Clementina had nothing worth killing for, and the marshal's questions yield few clues. Although the cold, domineering prosecutor chivvies the marshal as a stupid plodder, Guarnacci traces links to the victim patiently, simultaneously giving attention to everyone who brings their problems to him. Eventually, a conversation with an elderly survivor of the ruinous flood in Florence tells the marshal what he needs to know in order to convict a low type for several felonies. This superb novel rises far above the staples of the genre. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
Paperback - 223 pages - 978-0-14-011881-0
Hardcover - 315 pages - 978-1-55504-663-7
Paperback - 223 pages - 978-1-56947-340-5
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