Drawing Conclusions (Commissario Brunetti, #20)
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Drawing Conclusions (Commissario Brunetti #20)

3.84 of 5 stars 3.84  ·  rating details  ·  2,596 ratings  ·  322 reviews
Though there are some signs of a struggle, the medical examiner rules that a widow died of a heart attack. Brunetti can't shake the feeling that something or someone may have triggered her heart attack. With the help of Inspector Vianello and the ever-resourceful Signorina Elettra, perhaps Brunetti can get to the truth and find some measure of justice.
Hardcover, 260 pages
Published April 4th 2011 by Atlantic Monthly Press (first published 2011)
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One of the pleasures of reading books in a series is that we have a chance to become really familiar with a set of characters. This particular mystery was not necessarily my favorite of Donna Leon's but it drew on Commissario Brunetti's romantic nature and also refined for the reader his very personal moral code. And, that I liked.

Food and family are usually very important in Leon's series and I was a bit disappointed that Brunetti missed so many meals in this book. It is always a great pleasure...more
Kae Cheatham
I was given the chance to read the ARC of this mystery, due out in April 2011. It is the 20th Commissario Guido Brunetti novel, the first published in 1992. As an overall tag for what the book is about, I would say it's a story of possible crimes.

Guido Brunetti is an interesting, thoughtful person; highly observant, very little escapes his notice, from the color of grass, to faint bruises along the neck of a dead woman, Signora Altavilla. Along with the bruises, he considers the placement of fur...more
Mark Stevens
Terrific setting and sharp-eyed Guido Brunetti (as always). Deep undercurrents of Venice (as with most in this series).

But “Drawing Conclusions,” for me, dragged along. The story failed to work up a head of steam. Guido Brunetti didn’t seem all that concerned. Sure, he’s dogged. Sure, he keeps going over the scant details he uncovers. Yes, he has some powerful conversations and finally gets to the bottom of matters. But the investigation into the strange death of widow Costanza Altavilla is too...more
What I can say about “Drawing Conclusions” that I haven’t said about all of Donna Leon’s other books? Her books are always well thought out and have more to do with the complexity of human emotion than they do with the violence of death. I never tire of the way Brunetti works through an investigation…the way he thinks, the way he looks inside himself to arrive at answers. I’m nearing the last book that Leon has of yet written in this series...and am hoping she writes a little faster!
An adequate but not great detective story. This is a recent story about Leon's recurring character, Guido Brunetti, a detective in Venice, Italy. I liked Brunetti, refreshingly he is a detective without a flawed personal life.

The story is unusual for the detective genre. A woman is dead, but it isn't clear if it is murder or a natural death. One of the problems with the story for me is that the question is never resolved, at the end we don't really know how the woman died.

Along the way there are...more
When an elderly woman is found dead in her apartment, with no sign of an intruder, and the coroner reports her death as the result of a heart attack, there should not have been any inquiry into her death. However, since Commissario Brunetti was called out to the scene of the crime, he experienced a sense of disquiet over her death. More so when he speaks with the coroner and is informed that there were some faint bruises on the woman's shoulder, which could have been caused by a person's grippin...more
David Harry
Nov 15, 2011 David Harry rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone who loves mysteries
Shelves: mystery
I love Venice and one of the reasons I loved Donna Leon’s latest book, Drawing Conclusions, is because it is set in Venice. The famous Commissario Guido Brunetti return again to investigate the apparent heart attack of an older woman.

The other reason I loved Leon's novel is because it perfectly captures the imperfections of the human condition. These human imperfections are as apparent as the crumbling imperfections of the once great city.

Commissario Brunetti probes what, to the professionals...more
This is the 20th book in this series and only the second one that I have read. I read #18 and this one. I have a feeling that to do justice to the series that I should start at the beginning and read them in order so that the characters and the relationships can unfold and mature. But until then--Venetian Commissario Guido Brunetti is called to the apartment of a woman in her 60s who is found dead by her neighbor. Although the autopsy reveals that she died of a heart attack, Brunetti thinks that...more
Commissario Guido Brunetti is called to investigate the death of middle-aged woman in her apartment. She had been dead for a few days. There was a cut on her scalp, blood on the floor and radiator, and a few light marks near her neck. The death appeared to be a heart attack.
The woman was the mother of Vice-Questore Guiseppe Patta’s son’s former veterinarian and Patta wanted to know what happened. Fast.
His first priority is learning about the woman. With the help of his assistant Vianello and...more

Guido Brunetti is having dinner with Vice-Questore Patta and Lieutenant Scarpa, forced into this social occasion ostensibly to discuss promotions. Guido is praying for the end of the world or, at least, some violent distraction by armed intruders so that he could grab a gun and rid himself of the two men. Brunetti is not a a violent man but dealing with these men at the Questura is one thing, dealing with them on his own time is something else again.

When his cell phone rings, Brunetti thinks it...more
Biblio Files
After the disappointing A Question of Belief and About Face, I had resolved to quit reading Donna Leon's new books and go back to her excellent first mysteries. The way she combined social issues with fast-paced detective work in the early books was irresistible. My favorite was her first -- Death at La Fenice.

Then her books started to emphasize the social issues more than the mysteries until in the last few books the murders seemed to take a back seat. I stopped reading about halfway through A...more
First Sentence: Because she had worked for decades as a translator of fiction and non-fiction from English and German to Italian, Anna Maria Giusti was familiar with a wide range of subjects.

When a woman finds the body of her neighbor, Comm. Guido Brunetti is called to the scene. The medical examiner pronounces the cause of death to be a heart attack, but Brunetti has questions created by the blood from a wound on the victim’s head and a bruise near her throat. A search for the truth leads Guido...more
Mediocre mystery book with a lot of lose ends and unsatisfactory resolution. I liked the detective but it is not an original character. Disappointing.
One may read Leon's books for the mysteries, one may read them for the vivd depictions of Venice, or one may read them for the good man that is her protagonist. Brunetti is just a smidge more world-weary in this one, more willing to challenge the status quo in order to bring justice for a woman he suspects was murdered. Satisfying, richly detailed, and clever as always - it's a mystery whether Leon's prose or her characterization is better.
The combination of Donna Leon's detailed, subtle & multi-layered writing & narrator David Colacci's wonderful vocal range is excellent. Hardly able to put it down, I continued to listen while I vacuumed the house this afternoon (just turned up the volume!). It's marvelous to be able to enjoy being transported to Venice while you complete mundane household chores! I highly recommend listening to this series.
Another solid Brunetti story. As relaxing as a warm bath, these books are charming. It is a real change in detective fiction to be dealing with a detective who is neither alcoholic or in marriage ruined by his job. Brunetti has a wife and two children whom he loves and the backdrop of a Venetian setting adds almost another character to the stories. The thing I like most about them though is Brunetti's moral centre, held despite the cruelties he sees in his his work and the corruption rife in Ita...more
This was my first and, I am sorry to say, probably my last Brunetti mystery. After a compelling and suspenseful opening, the plot fizzled to a slow, muddled mess with no real resolution. I read mysteries partly to enjoy the reveal and to see if I guessed the culprit correctly. That satisfying end was missing. Lengthy descriptions of meals and bits of business slowed the pacing to a crawl. Whole chapters were interesting descriptions of a lunch or a family member but did nothing to move the story...more
A slightly wistful outing for Commisario Brunnetti in this tale. There is a slow and gentle pace to this story of a 'is it or isn't it a murder' A story for a Sunday afternoon if there was ever one. As ever the city of Venice is conjured up for our delight and it's canals, calles and campos are the backdrop to the tale. This is an introspective Brunnetti dealing patiently with a mystery that might be nothing more than a tragic accident.There is no grand set scene here, rather an unravelling of a...more
Shonna Froebel
This novel is a quieter story than many of hers, with less food. (And usually the lovely food is one of the draws for this series.) Here, a young woman, Signora Giusti has returned home early from a trip to meet her fiance's family and certain things don't seem right about her downstairs neighbour, Signora Altavilla, not responding to her calls or knocks. She goes to use her key to see what is wrong and finds the door unlocked and, after going into the living area, finds her neighbour dead on th...more
Toni Osborne
Book 20, in the Commissario Guido Brunetti Mystery

As usual Ms. Leon’s social concerns always play a prominent component of her mysteries; in her latest tale she looks into how a civilized society treats abused women and the elderly. The catchy setting is the romantic waterways of Venice with the loveable and caring Commissario Brunetti at the helm.

The story opens with the death of sexagenarian, Widow Costanza Altavilla, from what appears to be a fatal heart attack in her apartment in Santa Croce...more
Nov 10, 2012 Nancy added it
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Teri Kelly
From what I can ascertain, having not read Donna Leon or her Commissario Brunetti novels previously, this is the twentieth instalment of the criminal detection capabilities of said Commissario. Having said that, it would then come as no surprise (and especially not to Brunetti devotees) that Leon’s Venice and her detective are sufficiently enough drawn and developed to afford her writing an authenticity sometimes lacking in fictional crime. Leon obviously knows her man and his locale intimately,...more
I generally find Donna Leon's books very compelling and thoughtful, as Brunetti's sense of justice and his battles between that sense and the actual laws are always interesting. This latest installment was very unsatisfying, as the mystery to me remained unsolved, or if it was solved it did not fulfill any sense of justice that normally applies to Brunetti's creative solutions. Usually he honors the victims and the important thing is knowing the story of what happened and that there was some clo...more
Lynn Harnett
As he has been praying for the end of the world to release him from an interminable dinner with his superior, Vice Questore Patta, and his nemesis Lt. Scarpa, Commissario Guido Brunetti of the Venetian police is not entirely sorry to be called away to a possible crime scene.

The dead woman is Costanza Altavilla, a retired schoolteacher, a widow, who volunteered in a Catholic-run nursing home. There’s a wound to her head, but a heart attack was the cause of death. The blow to the head could have b...more
Josh Mcdonald
For some time now my wife has been prodding me to read Donna Leon's "Commissario Brunetti" series, and I started with this one mostly because it was on hand when I needed something new to read. She tells me it's not the best of the series, so I'll be sure to read more before making any definitive judgements.

This book doesn't resolve itself the way one expects from a typical mystery-story. It's not a bad resolution, and it is satisfying in a literary way, but it does leave the central mystery som...more
Ricki Nordmeyer
Few mystery series get to the 20th title, but Donna Leon’s “Commissario Brunetti “ novels have reached that point with Drawing Conclusions. And Amen to that! Scores of readers of this series consider each new volume as comfort candy and devour them happily. The plus is that Leon has created a rich world of contemporary Venice with a protagonist who is not only a thinking, but more to the point, a feeling investigator. Guido Brunetti loves his city, his wife and his work. This time an elderly ret...more
Number 20 of the Commissario Brunetti series, and I think, the last so far. Excellent. Venice is, as always, a fascinating city, and the descriptions of the apartments having been lived in and renovated for centuries adds even more to the fascinating mix. The theme on which the story itself is based in this book revolves around the death of an old woman. She was independently financially well off and rather a philanthropist. And the question that has far reaching implications is that whether her...more
Drawing Conclusions is the 20th in the Brunetti series. Though I enjoyed the book, it seemed that it was not really up to the generally high standard of the series. The characters seemed a bit wooden, like puppets rather than fully formed characters. It is as if the author is getting tired of her characters and simply going through the motions. Don't get me wrong: if this book were written by another author I would rate it highly and recommend it. But it's just not up to Donna Leon's standards.

As usual with Leon, Venice takes centerstage. The rhythm of life in the serene city is adapted to foot traffic, as well as the taxi service being via canal. It never seems to take Guido Brunetti long to get anywhere on foot--15 minutes, 10 minutes--or he takes long walks around his floating city just to clear his mind, to see the light on the water, the rooftops and domes. He goes home for lunch, enjoys his meals, complete with wines, enjoys his family, is puzzled by his children, enamored with...more
This 20th Guido Brunetti mystery is another solid offering from Donna Leon. It features, as usual, a wonderful look at the culture of Venice. It's difficult to read any of these books and not crave the food being eaten or prepared or the beverages being imbibed. The story and the storytelling are very well done. Brunetti remains true to himself, upholding justice, if not always strictly, the law. It's always great to visit the world of Commissario Brunetti, to see him deal with the red tape of b...more
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Donna Leon (born September 29, 1942, in Montclair, New Jersey) is an American author of a series of crime novels set in Venice and featuring the fictional hero Commissario Guido Brunetti.

Donna Leon has lived in Venice for over twenty-five years. She has worked as a lecturer in English Literature for the University of Maryland University College - Europe (UMUC-Europe) in Italy, then as a Professor...more
More about Donna Leon...
Death at La Fenice (Commissario Brunetti, #1) Death in a Strange Country (Commissario Brunetti, #2) Acqua Alta (Commissario Brunetti, #5) Dressed for Death (Commissario Brunetti, #3) A Noble Radiance (Commissario Brunetti, #7)

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