Joshua's Reviews > Death at La Fenice

Death at La Fenice by Donna Leon
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Sep 25, 08

bookshelves: mystery-thrillers
Recommended for: For fans of the 70's and 80's detective shows
Read in September, 2008

The first in the Guido Brunetti series.

This one is a nice by the numbers detective book, where the talking leads to a lot more talking, the clues lead to a lot of leg work, and the killing ends up being twisted, justified and out of left field.

I heard a lot of good things about this book, and while interesting in certain respects (I imagine this is how real detecting is done), this book has lead me to the realization that I'm not really a fan of dectective procedural novels. I'm more of a hard-boiled Dashiell Hammett, Mickey Spillane kind of guy, so while this book was good, I found myself bored many times, feeling that the story was dragging-- which for a short book is not a good sign.

Still, while I'm not a fan of detective procedural novels, I am a fan of Donna Leon's Venice. Her Venice is vibrant and alive. By reading though her writing, the reader is taken along a journey through the cramped apartments of Venice, the endless canals, the mindless maze-like streets, and the losing luster of it's timeless beauty. This is the real and romanticized view all at the same time. This is a living, breathing Venice, more important that detective Guide Brunetti himself, and that's why I give this 3 stars.

Entertaining enough if you like Columbo and Matlock.
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