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In Earthly Remains, the twenty-sixth novel in this series, Brunetti's endurance is tested more than ever before. During an interrogation of an entitled, arrogant man suspected of giving drugs to a young girl who then died, Brunetti acts rashly, doing something he will quickly come to regret. In the fallout, he realizes that he needs a break, needs to get away from the stifling problems of his work.
When Brunetti is granted leave from the Questura, his wife, Paola, suggests he stay at the villa of a relative on Sant'Erasmo, one of the largest islands in the laguna. There he intends to pass his days rowing, and his nights reading Pliny's Natural History. The recuperative stay goes according to plan until Davide Casati, the caretaker of the house on Sant'Erasmo, goes missing following a sudden storm. Now, Brunetti feels compelled to investigate, to set aside his leave of absence and understand what happened to the man who had become his friend.
Earthly Remains is quintessential Donna Leon, a powerful addition to this celebrated series.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2017-02-13
- Reviewer: Staff
Bestseller Leons enticing 26th Commissario Guido Brunetti mystery (after 2016s The Waters of Eternal Youth) finds the Venetian policeman at headquarters one hot July day, questioning an arrogant lawyer accused of drugging a young woman he met at a party who subsequently died. When Brunetti has a heart seizure during this contentious interview, he winds up in the hospital. Prescribed complete rest, he later takes his wifes suggestion of staying at a villa on a sparsely inhabited island in the Venetian Lagoon. There he befriends Davide Casati, the villas caretaker and a keeper of bees, some of which are mysteriously dying. Then, during a fierce storm, Davide disappears. Brunetti undertakes a search that leads to the discovery of his friends body and boat. Was Davides death an accident? He had been grief stricken since his wifes death, Brunetti learns, and recently remorseful over the demise of his beloved bees. Along the way to the poignant ending, Brunetti develops insights into nature and humankinds failure to protect it, as well as the nature of guilt and its role in a mans life. Agent: Susanna Bauknecht, Diogenes Verlag (Switzerland). (Apr.)