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The Shape of Water (1994)

by Andrea Camilleri

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Commissario Montalbano (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,3011075,167 (3.59)560
The first in Andrea Camilleri's savagely funny, brilliantly compelling Sicilian crime series featuring Inspector Montalbano. The goats of Vigata once grazed on the trash-strewn site still known as the Pasture. Now local enterprise of a different sort flourishes: drug dealers and prostitutes of every flavour. But their discreet trade is upset when two employees of the Splendour Refuse Collection Company discover the body of engineer Silvio Luparello, one of the local movers and shakers, apparently deceased in flagrante at the Pasture. The coroner's verdict is death from natural causes-refreshingly unusual for Sicily. But Inspector Salvo Montalbano, as honest as he is streetwise and as scathing to fools and villains as he is compassionate to their victims, is not ready to close the case-even though he's being pressured by Vigata's police chief, judge, and bishop. Picking his way through a labyrinth of high-comedy corruption, delicious meals, vendetta firepower, and carefully planted false clues, Montalbano can be relied on, whatever the cost, to get to the heart of the matter.… (more)
  1. 20
    The Terra-Cotta Dog by Andrea Camilleri (ed.pendragon)
    ed.pendragon: The first two titles in the Montalbano series, with many of the same characters appearing in both.
  2. 00
    The Day of the Owl by Leonardo Sciascia (charl08)
  3. 11
    Death in August by Marco Vichi (Tom_D)
    Tom_D: Similar characters and a translator, Stephen Sartarelli, in common.
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» See also 560 mentions

English (93)  Spanish (7)  Italian (2)  Catalan (2)  Dutch (1)  French (1)  Finnish (1)  All languages (107)
Showing 1-5 of 93 (next | show all)
Overall I enjoyed the book, particularly the setting and glimpse into policing in Sicily. The mystery itself was a bit confusing and tied up too quickly at the end, but not so much that it'll keep me from reading more of this intriguing series. ( )
  Gingermama | Sep 24, 2021 |
I was expecting to love this, liking crime fiction as I do, and after reading all the positive reviews. I feel my problem may have been with the translation- when the characters spoke it was quite stilted and some of the paragraphs to me didn't make an awful lot of sense. I don't know, I expected more. I like the fact that Montalbano was not a stock character- he was witty and peculiar, but the other characters weren't all that well-drawn to me (especially the stereotypical swede. I will read one more in the series to see if it gets any better, but my hopes aren't high. ( )
  lucylove73 | Aug 31, 2021 |
3.5 stars. Sicilian Inspector Montalbano is a cross between Columbo and Spenser -- a relentless, imaginative gourmand. A politician is found is a dispreputable neighborhood, apparently dead of a heart attack. Everyone wants to move on, but some niggling details bother the detective, who unravels mysteries behind the strange death. Nice pictorial of Sicily. ( )
  skipstern | Jul 11, 2021 |
Interesting main character. Gritty story telling, easy to read. Get a feel for Sicilian life and picturesque setting. Did catch some of the snide humour, but not all - notes helped. Will definately read more in series. ( )
  SusanWallace | Jul 10, 2021 |
A very good plot. Gritty and hard-boiled. It takes a bit to get used to the italian names and keeping track of who's who, but it's worth the effort. ( )
  grandpahobo | Jul 3, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 93 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (5 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Andrea Camilleriprimary authorall editionscalculated
Andersson, BarbroTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Assemi, SchahrzadTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gracin, JurajTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Irizar, AnderTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Τραϊκόγλου… Μαρία-ΡόζαTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kangas, HelinäTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Menini, María AntoniaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mikołajewski, JarosławTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Quadruppani, SergeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Riu, XavierTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sartarelli, StephenTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Simoniti, VeronikaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Кондюриной… А.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
רפופורט, מירוןTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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No light of daybreak filtered yet into the courtyard of Splendor, the company under government contract to collect trash in the town to Vigàta.
Lume d'alba non filtrava nel cortiglio della «Splendor», la società che aveva in appalto la nettezza urbana di Vigàta, una nuvolaglia bassa e densa cummigliava completamente il cielo come se fosse stato tirato un telone grigio da cornicione a cornicione, foglia non si cataminava, il vento di scirocco tardava ad arrisbigliarsi dal suo sogno piombigno, già si faticava a scangiare parole.
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The first in Andrea Camilleri's savagely funny, brilliantly compelling Sicilian crime series featuring Inspector Montalbano. The goats of Vigata once grazed on the trash-strewn site still known as the Pasture. Now local enterprise of a different sort flourishes: drug dealers and prostitutes of every flavour. But their discreet trade is upset when two employees of the Splendour Refuse Collection Company discover the body of engineer Silvio Luparello, one of the local movers and shakers, apparently deceased in flagrante at the Pasture. The coroner's verdict is death from natural causes-refreshingly unusual for Sicily. But Inspector Salvo Montalbano, as honest as he is streetwise and as scathing to fools and villains as he is compassionate to their victims, is not ready to close the case-even though he's being pressured by Vigata's police chief, judge, and bishop. Picking his way through a labyrinth of high-comedy corruption, delicious meals, vendetta firepower, and carefully planted false clues, Montalbano can be relied on, whatever the cost, to get to the heart of the matter.

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