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A Dead Man in Naples

(Seymour of Special Branch #6)

3.26  ·  Rating details ·  68 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
Lionel Scampion, British consul in Naples, has been stabbed to death while bicycling through the piazza of the Porta Carmine. According to his sister, he had no enemies. The Neapolitan police suggest he was murdered by a bicycle-racing rival. In Naples, every mystery is attributed to the Camorra, a powerful criminal society; could its members be involved? Scampion enthusia ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published December 1st 2009 by Soho Constable (first published 2009)
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Mar 09, 2010 added it
British Special Branch officer Seymour is sent to Naples to investigate consulate official Lionel Scampion’s murder. To suggest he is merely on vacation, he travels with his fiancée Chantale. Did Scampion, an avid bicyclist, die at the hand of a racing rival? Or did he anger a member of the powerful Camorra, a Mafia-like criminal society of the time? Through talking to people and decoding a lottery ticket, Seymour identifies Scampion’s killer and the motive for the crime. Taking place during the ...more
Janet Martin
Unrest in Italy--the Redshirts are present, as is organized crime running gambling operations in Naples, but the main thing is the Italian army at war in Libya. Another fascinating snapshot of the simmering Mediterranean region just before WWI. And a murder, solved again by Seymour's thoughtful analysis. Lots of movement between viewpoint characters and plot bits in the beginning, so the audio was a little hard to follow during the first 30-40%, but a good story overall. I would probably have en ...more
Jul 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Was ready to toss this -- then spent a sunny afternoon reading slowly and got the depth and the tight, twisted web of history and fell in love with the people and the place (yes, Pink Martini "Una notte a Napoli" helped). Gabriele D'Annunzio figures and the rebellion, and the character are memorable and engaging and this was cleverly woven in with bicycling, politics and the group called Our Friends, cosa nostra types, and foundlings and loyalty and, of course, murder. Intriguing and thoughtful ...more
Alan Swift
Jan 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Micael Pearce writes dialogue beautifully and his stories meander along as Seymour solves the murder. I'm not sure this fully captured the feel of Naples but the theme was interesting and as always you learn something about the political and military tensions of the time. The characters are a believable and his books capture day to day life really well. Terrific holiday reading.
Dec 23, 2009 rated it liked it
When Scampion, an erratic but innocuous British consul to Naples is murdered, Seymour is sent from Scotland Yard to investigate. He and his Moroccan fiancee Chantale stay at a small pensione, where the people are more concerned with their own lives than with a dead Englishman. Seymour also ingratiates himself with the Marchese and the Army officers who were Scampion's best friends.
Mar 06, 2010 rated it really liked it
After disappointing first few books, this series really has hit its stride to provide some of the same human comedy / street life humor as author's Mamur Zapt series (which I adore). Not a copy cat and probably not equal favorites but after being on the verge of giving up on this one, a few books back started turning into one I see out.
Feb 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Seymour is with his fiancé to figure out who killed LIonel. His sister thinks that no one hated him. But then why is he dead?
Jun 02, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: naples, bicycling
The story meanders too much but I enjoy Michael Pearce most of the time.
Jan 10, 2011 rated it liked it
amusing little mystery
Nick Benson
Jun 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Good series - good mixture of local colour and the fringe of large scale events working themselves out on a small scale
Carol Best
Sep 08, 2014 rated it liked it
It took me awhile to get into this story but I really enjoyed it. Good local colour, humour and history. I will be reading more books by this author.
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Michael Pearce grew up in the (then) Anglo-Egyptian Sudan. He returned there later to teach, and retains a human rights interest in the area. He has recently retired from his academic post to write full time.

Other books in the series

Seymour of Special Branch (7 books)
  • A Dead Man in Trieste (Seymour of Special Branch, #1)
  • A Dead Man in Istanbul (Seymour of Special Branch, #2)
  • A Dead Man in Athens (Seymour of Special Branch, #3)
  • A Dead Man in Tangier (Seymour of Special Branch, #4)
  • A Dead Man in Barcelona (Seymour of Special Branch, #5)
  • A Dead Man in Malta (Seymour of Special Branch, #7)