Recent Events

Wednesday 14 January 2015

‘The Art of Killing Well’ by Marco Malvaldi

Published by Maclehose Press.
19 June 2014.
ISBN: 978-0-85705-294-0
Translated by Howard Curtis

The book is set in 1895 in Italy and it shows the world of the aristocrat in the newly unified Italy.  The amateur detective here is the real life writer, Pellagrino Artusi, who wrote the first Italian cookbook which included recipes from all parts of Italy.  Artusi, who was from Emilia-Romagna, wrote The Science of Cooking and the Art of Eating Well

In this tale he is visiting a Tuscan castle belonging to a baron Romualdo Bonianti.  The author satirises the rigid social classes of 19th century Italy.  This imaginary family includes  two dysfunctional sons, their  elderly, crippled grandmother and two unfortunate old maids - all are trapped by the outdated social code.  When Artusi arrives at the castle expecting to enjoy interesting food he finds that the death of a servant  has led to the involvement of the local police inspector and that another crime will follow.  The interplay of these eccentric characters is enjoyable with Artusi considering the events in the light of his current reading of the adventures of a famous English fictional detective.

A solution to the crime is found and the story finished with a flourish, as a number of recipes for period dishes are described.
Rviewer: Jennifer S. Palmer
Marco Malvedi has 2 other detective stories that have also been translated by Howard Curtis.  These 2 both concern amateur sleuth and batman Massimo and his friends 

Marco Malvaldi was born in Pisa in 1974, and is both a crime novelist and a chemist. He is best known for his BarLume series set on the Tuscan Coast, and also for The Art of Killing Well, for which he was awarded both the Isola d'Elba Award and the Castiglioncello Prize.

Jennifer Palmer Throughout my reading life crime fiction has been a constant interest; I really enjoyed my 15 years as an expatriate in the Far East, the Netherlands & the USA but occasionally the solace of closing my door to the outside world and sitting reading was highly therapeutic. I now lecture to adults on historical topics including Famous Historical Mysteries.

No comments:

Post a Comment