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End Games by Michael Dibdin

End Games (2007)

by Michael Dibdin

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One of Dibdin's best. His images of Sicily and its people make me wonder if Dibdin pushes them too far over the edge (descriptively), the way he does with the californian rich dude. And it is true, some countries do live the subjunctive as the fixer character points out. The important thing for us readers is Dibdin can write. Also (semi-spoiler) it is seldom in italian crime books that the bad guys get it, but here they do. Because of this, the police have to force the detective, Mr. Zen, to retire for solving the case. ( )
  kerns222 | Feb 18, 2012 |
The last Aurelio Zen, and thoroughly enjoyable. Kidnappings, murders, silly Americans, criminal Europeans, and omerta, set in Calabria, where Zen has been sent as a temporary chief. ( )
  mojacobs | Feb 15, 2011 |
Dibdin is back to form with a well-plotted crime novel. Whilst there is the usual existential angst from Zen (his hatred for tomato-based southern Italian cooking is very funny), his personal life is not intrusive. What a pity that this was Dibdin's last novel (he died shortly after it was completed), but at least Zen's personal life seemed to have reached a state of equilibrium.... ( )
  saliero | Feb 13, 2008 |
Reviewed in Mystery Scene.
  bfister | Dec 28, 2007 |
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The ferocious character of the Barbarians was displayed, in the funeral of a hero, whose valour, and fortune, they celebrated with mournful applause. By the labour of a captive multitude, they forcibly diverted the course of the Busentinus, a small river that washes the walls of Cosentia. The royal sepulchre, adorned with the splendid spoils, and trophies, of Rome, was constructed in the vacant bed; the waters were then restored to their natural channel; and the secret spot, where the remains of Alaric had been deposited, was for ever concealed by the inhuman massacre of the prosoners, who had been employed to execute the work. --Edward Gibbon, 'The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire'
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The dead man parked his car at the edge of the town, beside a crumbling wall marking the bounds of a rock-gashed wasteland of crippled oaks and the dusty scrub whose ownership had been the subject of litigation for over three decades, and which had gradually turned into an unofficial rubbish tip for the local population.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0307386724, Paperback)

When an advance scout for an American film company disappears, Aurelio Zen's most recent assignment in remote Calabria becomes anything but routine. Despite a savage attack that has scared the locals silent, Zen is determined to expose the truth. To make matters more complicated, a group of dangerous strangers, led by a rich, single-minded American have arrived to uncover another local mystery—buried treasure—and they will stop at nothing to achieve their goal. What ensues is a fiendishly suspenseful case that only Aurelio Zen could stumble into and only Michael Dibdin could have created: a wild thriller that takes us deep into a remote region of Italy and the darkest corners of human nature.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:58:52 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

While on a routine assignment in the remote region of Calabria, police detective Aurelio Zen is drawn into two suspicious cases involving the disappearance of an advance scout for an American film company and a hunt for buried treasure.

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