The Shape of Water (Commissario Montalbano #1)
The Shape of Water is the first in Andrea Camilleri's wry, brilliantly compelling Sicilian crime series, featuring Inspector Montalbano.
The goats of Vigàta 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 o...more
It's difficult to describe The Shape of Water (or really, any of Camilleri's novels) without invoking this word, but in a sense far different from its usual usage. The 'lightness' that pervades his books is more like that of an Olympic skater executing a triple axel: something ...more
I decided to try Camilleri because I'd watched one of the Montalbano series on TV. You know how it is, you find the characters and scenery interesting, the story lines are good... you're just hooked and want to try the "real" thing just to see how it matches up.
The first thing I'm going to say is that they don't feel the same. The TV detective is super-cool in that dark Italian way, his team are efficient and work well together. Camilleri's Montalbano... well he's somehow slightly di ...more
First off - this is a Mediterranean crime novel. It's not an American type of crime novel, where serial killers are lurking on parking lots, or a Scandinavian novel with dreary landscapes, thick plots and social commentary. It's Mediterrane ...more
After reading some gloomy Swedish policiers, I decided to head for a warmer climate and check out what the buzz is about this late blooming (he wrote his first succesful novels in his late sixties) Italian, or should I say Sicilian, writer. Local colour is the first bait that he sets in my path, drawing me like a patient fisherman into his net. Vigata is a small city by the sea, in the Montelusa jurisdiction - both imaginary localities, but sufficiently authentic for the inhabitants of Cam ...more
I watch Inspector Montalbano on the BBC which I thoroughly enjoy and so decided that I had to purchase the first book in the series.
Sicily to me is a magical island (forget about the Mafia for a moment) and the book definitely set the scene for the television series. However, it was the quality of the literature that sustained my interest.
All the ingredients are here for an excellent book. Inspector Salvo Montalbano, who’s streetwise, loves his food, a man who appears to have met the woman of h ...more
Io sono siciliano e le riprese del Commissario Montalbano sono state fatte (e sono ancora girate, visto che ad aprile gireranno nuove puntate) nel mio paese e comunque abito in questa bella provincia siciliana. So bene che Camilleri, invece, ...more
Intelligent humor. Maybe a bit smart for me. When the narrator or characters describe someone or something as being like a painting by an painter that I have never heard of, or reference plays by authors unknown to me, I start to wonder if there was a pre-requisite to this class and I missed it.
Definitely not of the English or American detective school and refreshing bec ...more
Bien, muy bien. Un libro que no me ha defraudado en absoluto, todo lo contrario. Me ha gustado Salvo Montalbano, es un tipo que desde el principio cae bien, con un carácter mediterráneo y latino en el que los españoles podemos vernos reflejados muy bien. Andrea Camilleri consigue que lo veamos, que nos lo imaginemos, un tipo peculiar, con mucho vivido, posiblemente ya de vuelta de todo, amante de la buena comida y de los placeres de la vida. Con mala lech ...more
It is an interesting and engaging but not a gripping mystery.
The pages and the events keep you hooked. But it does not grip you.
It is an entertainer for sure. A perfect read at the beach or in the travel.
Besides, one gets to know of the inner politics of the Sicilian state of the Italy. The attitudes of the Sicilians towards the rest of Italy, especially about North Italy and the way Sicilians see themselves in their context, the inner workings of the Sicilian society (rela ...more
Gardner brings this book and the character to life. If I didn't know better I'd think he was Inspector Montalbano in the way he breathes life into each word.
Set in Sicily, this fast paced and funny mystery draws you in from the first line. The character crafting is very good and within a few lines I feel as ...more
nota zece pentru traducere. un deliciu de la un capăt la altul.
The story itself was bizarre but interesting, with many humorous asides.
This is a recurring theme in Camilleri's mysteries in that the "facts" of the crime are always shaped by the point of view of the crime-solvers...or the crime-obscurers...or the criminals themselves who hide messages in the way the crime is committed or the way the body is displayed. So...crimes are like water...and Montalbano loves water, going for long swims whenever the facts of life in mafia-ridden Sicily threaten to overwhelm ...more
The Pasture, once a goat grazing site is now the place to pick up a drug deal or a prostitute. Montalbano is already a bit suspicious about Luparello's death but when pressure starts being applied by a p ...more
Unfortunately, this was a rather poor translation; on several occasions I was jolted out of the book by a word or phrase that just didn't work or was wrong. For example, a Sicilian word was translated as dawdling, and the translator explained that in Sicilian it meant to do nothing. So the character "dawdles" do ...more
This book is translated from the Sicilian-Italian and I think the translator has done a good job or adding the Sicilian flavour to it. The writing is descripti ...more
The first in the Inspector ...more
I am encouraged to pursue the relationship, though I hope future plots will not cause me so much re-reading to sort out the characters as troubled me here. Otherwise, I was engag ...more
Camilleri maintains a light touch even as he delves into crimes dictated by rapacity and political ambition.
The plot is convoluted, the evidence assembled in fragments; the connections sometimes elusive. I enjoyed it very much.
Originally from Porto Empedocle, Sicily, Camilleri began studies at the Faculty of Literature in 1944, without concluding them, meanwhile publishing poems and short stories. Around this time he joined the Italian Communist Party.
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Montalbano, never very studious, had been a mischievous pupil, always sitting in the last row.
“So that must mean that if everyone in the family tells the truth, they save on the electric bill.”