Commissario Ricciardi solves crimes with a swiftness that leaves his colleagues dumbfounded. Indeed, there are those who think his abilities are the work of the devil, an unnatural and ungodly gift to be exorcised. And maybe they’re right. Ricciardi sees and hears the final moments in the lives of those who have suffered violent deaths. It may be a talent, it may be a curse, it may be black magic. Whatever it is, it makes him a remarkably effective investigator. In this fourth installment of the internationally acclaimed Commissario Ricciardi series, Ricciardi is investigating the death of Matteo, one of the many street kids who live hand-to-mouth in the dark alleys of 1930s Naples. It’s a rainy autumn and fog lays thick over the city as its inhabitants celebrate the week of the dead. Ricciardi’s instincts tell him that the boy’s death is not a result of natural causes, but his superiors will have none of it. The city is preparing for Benito Musolini’s state visit and a murder on the front pages of the local newspapers is the last thing they need. But something sinister is afoot and Ricciardi will not let the matter rest.
Maurizio de Giovanni
Maurizio de Giovanni lives and works in Naples. In 2005, he won a writing competition for unpublished authors with a short story set in the thirties about Commissario Ricciardi, which was then turned into the first novel of the series. His books have been successfully translated into French, Spanish and German, and are now available in English for the first time.