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The Sect of Angels

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  380 ratings  ·  50 reviews
Based on a true story and told with the pacing, humor, and thrills of a Mediterranean mystery, Andrea Camilleri’s new novel tells of a turn-of-the-century Sicilian scandal that revealed a tendency that is with us still: the refusal to accept the truth.

The lawyer and journalist Matteo Teresi discovers the existence of a secret sect whose members include priests, politicians
Paperback, 208 pages
Published March 12th 2019 by Europa Editions (first published October 20th 2011)
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Average rating 3.94  · 
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Feb 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Andrea Camilleri often uses real events to inspire his character driven writing. The Sect of Angels is a gem of a novel which grew from events in a Sicilian town in 1901. It depicts the unholy trinity of Nobility, Church and Mafioso elements that work together for mutual benefit but will little thought to the general public. Camilleri is an advocate of the common folk not those deemed their masters, spiritual guides and enforcers.
It is a tale of hypocrisy, unholy symbioses, closed societies and
May 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Something strange is going on in Palizzolo. Matteo Teresi, Lawyer/Journalist at the local paper will let nothing come in the way of finding out just what is going on in his small town. Will he find the truth or will his enemies get the best of him?
I actually picked up this book specifically seeking works of Italian Authors. I was pleasantly surprised when I started to read "The Sect of Angels." A quick, fast read, you'll be turning the pages, laughing hysterically and wondering what the hell pe
The true story this book is based on is fascinating; I highly recommend reading the author's note at the end of the book, where he discusses the true events that inspired this novel.

Comedy switches to the grotesque in this story, and it's very much a social commentary on small town life. People of the town go to great lengths to keep the status-quo, even if it means sweeping crimes under the rug and using an innocent man as a scapegoat. This is a well-written book, and brings to light a scandal
Joe M
Mar 13, 2019 rated it liked it
Based on a true scandal in a small village in Sicily at the turn of the century, A Sect of Angels is a humorous and captivating little mystery with a wonderful setting and a large cast of colorful characters. Putting a spotlight on corruption, elaborate cover-ups, and the abuse of power, it's near impossible not to draw parallels to current events in religion and politics around the world. Great stuff from the author of the Inspector Montalbano series and always interesting Europa Editions.

Dina K
Feb 10, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
This book for me was a little hard to read. There were so many names that I found it hard to remember who was who. If you can get past that, the story is quite amusing. It is based on true evevts that took place in a small Sicilian town. It was well written and very interesting.
I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Dec 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
First encounter with this author, and I am delighted! His writing had me laughing repeatedly, even while this rather grim Sicilian mystery-inspired-by-shitty-true-events took some dark turns. What a hero our lawyer is, though!
Mar 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Brilliantly told story, an embellishment of a true story, pure laugh-out-loud farce until the full story is revealed - and then, unmitigated tragedy. No more smiles.

p.s. have you read this yet Alan?
Jan 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
It was a rollicking and humorous story, an amusing frenzy filled with a large and vivid cast of Sicilians. It was merely entertainment, and then it wasn’t. The seriousness of the story gradually becomes apparent, with ever increasing gravity, and it becomes even more shocking when one finds that the story was based on true events. It was a very worthy read.

This ebook was provided by NetGalley in return for an honest review.
Jul 03, 2019 rated it liked it
with a 1/2... inspired by a true tale a well executed Sicilian thriller with BIG characters makes this a good read. There is humour, there is the grim truth. The evil RC church to hang its head in shame...makes this a timely read. Who would have thought a cardinal in prison. That surely is deemed headway.
Betty Skonnord
Jan 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Even in translation, this is a finely written book. The author reels the reader slowly, inexorably into a dark world. At the end I felt like crying; do people in positions of power (whether church, state or whatever) ever actually care about the truth? And victims? Is every leader corrupt, and watching only for his (or her) own skin and advantage?
Definitely a good read but not a book to cheer yourself with.
Emanuele Gemelli
May 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: e-reader
I happened to have read this in english instead of in the original Italian version and I must say it loses a lot, considering the effort the translator did in transposing most of the Sicilian dialectical expressions. Said that a nice and captivating story from a master of Italian culture of late 20th century
Sep 05, 2019 rated it liked it
I found this a well written novel by the author of the Montalbano series. But it was all rather depressing -- with the lead character who uncovers a big scandal is driven out of town.
Bill McFadyen
Sep 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Based on a true story this is a magnificent book recording the scandal and its outfall on the individuals of a small town on early 20 century Sicily.
A great read.
Nov 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
A very good allegory, wonderfully written, on the corruption of the church and powerful set in old Sicily, and on how women were used and mistreated in history. Very clever, and timely message.
Albert Farrugia
Dec 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
very readable deflection from his Montalbano series,and another salute to his beloced, always robbed,Sicily.
May 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Originally published on my blog: Nonstop Reader.

The Sect of Angels is a novella by Andrea Camilleri, who is well known as the author of the Montalbano mysteries. Released 30th April 2019 by Europa Editions, it's 176 pages and available in paperback and ebook formats.

Prolific and engaging, Camilleri's books are readable and always enjoyable. I have been following his work for years. I found this story, based on true events from 1901 in a rural town in Sicily, a lot heavier going than the Inspecto
Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was ok
This farcical tale has its roots on an actual occurrence in Alia Italy in the early 1900's. Some of the dialogue is very funny, if not ribald.
Aaron Mcquiston
Feb 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Reading the synopsis of "The Sect of Angels" really tells enough about the story. Matteo Teresi is a lawyer in town that even in the beginning is not in favor with the town, the church and all of the men who follow the strength of the church. Teresi does not care much for that, continues to do what he does, and does things for the right reason. This is Teresi's downfall. A great deal of the motivation for his actions in this short novel is for justice to be served, even if that means becoming th ...more
I enjoy the premise of fiction based upon true events - and Camilleri makes use of an event from 1901, when a lawyer, Matteo Teresi (dc.1970), awaiting a decision on his membership to a private social club, decides to investigate an epidemic of miraculous pregnancies among the towns' young women.

What the lawyer Teresi will find is a wall of silence built up by key (and often conflicting) elements within the small community - the Church, the Mafia, the Nobility. It is not hard to identify with T
Danielle P
May 06, 2019 rated it it was ok
Yet another work of fiction where rape and sexual abuse serve as a plot device so that a man who acts like a decent human being can be portrayed as an injured, unjustly treated hero. Ho-hum.

This one is set in 1901 in Palizzolo, Italy, and the "hero" is Matteo Teresi, an already unpopular lawyer who sets out to discover what lies behind the rumours of a cholera epidemic that sweep through the town. It turns out that the real "outbreak" is one of pregnancy in four pious young women.

Based on histor
Jan 20, 2019 rated it liked it
The Sect of Angels written by Andrea Camilleri was not a favorite book for me to read. I expected the frivolity of the written chaos in a humorous way among the Honor and Family Social Club and also the various interactions of personalities and villagers during the story, set in 1901 Sicily. The focus of the story is whether to accept Teresi's request for admission to the members of Honor and Family Social Club. He is a lawyer and the other members, priests and noblemen, are reluctant to let him ...more
May 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: europeanfiction
Once again, Andrea Camilleri delves into Sicilian history, to give us a story that illuminates our present.

A conspiracy of clerical abuse is uncovered by a lawyer/journalist in a Sicilian town, during the early 1900s. The lawyer pieces together the story, which has left a number of very young, unmarried women pregnant and whilst this is, at first, leads to the arrest of the priests involved, an unholy alliance of the Church, government, aristocracy and mafia plot together to run the lawyer out o
Mar 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
I had a hard time slogging through the beginning of this book because there were so many names thrown out. I found it difficult to follow the story because I was trying to keep all of the characters straight, and then all of the names of the priests and their churches were added. Ultimately I did find the dialogue between the men at the meeting amusing but was happy to move on to the rest of the story. Even though the blurb about the book lays out the basic facts of the story it was so well writ ...more
Dec 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Andrea Camilleri is a master storyteller and one of my favourite writer. I read all his books in Italian and was curious to see how his unique mix of Italian and Sicilian dialect could be translated into English.
I can say that the translator did a very good job: the characters and the descriptions are lively and engaging. Something is lost in the translation but the style is the same I'm used to read in Italian.
As for the book is engaging, entertaining and a real page turner.
The setting is vivid
Apr 24, 2019 rated it liked it
Loosely based on real events from the early 1900s, this tells the story of a cult of Sicilian priests who prey on young women and the attorney who exposes them.

I had difficulty with this book. Although based on a serious topic, a good part of it read, to me, like a farce. And, yes, all those names!!! The ending sadly reflected what seems so often to be reality in situations like this one.
Bill Berger
Mar 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another new non-Montalban novel by the great Italian author., Camilleri.
Although having as many names as a Tolstoy, the story is interesting and the local color, so integral in his work, makes it a very good read.
Marcello La
Sep 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very good historical novel.

SPOILER: It somehow leaves you with some bad taste in your mouth, thinking how some things never changes... well, for sure they haven't in Sicily.
Mar 25, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another wonderful novel by Andrea Camilleri I can highly recommend.
Matthew Barnes
Dec 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A book about a true story in 1901, which still has deep feeling today.

Full review:
Sue Holmes
Mar 13, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
DNF. Confusing and slow.
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GOOD REVIEWS: The Sect Of Angels by Andrea Camilleri 1 4 Dec 23, 2018 11:59PM  
NetGalley Addicts...: The Sect of Angels by Andrea Camilleri 1 17 Dec 23, 2018 11:57PM  

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Andrea Camilleri (born september 6, 1925 in Porto Empedocle) was an Italian writer. He is considered one of the greatest Italian writers of both 20th and 21st centuries.

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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