Synopses & Reviews
On vacation with her husband in an idyllic Italian valley, Police Inspector Simona Tavianello stops at the local beekeepers shop to buy some honey, where she finds a body lying in the entrance. Simona tries to avoid involvement—she is, after all, off-duty. But when she realizes that the murder weapon is her own gun, what can she do but take charge?
The victim was an engineer at the controversial agricultural research center for Sacropiano, a biotechnology company accused of developing pesticides that are making the bees in the region disappear. At the same time Simona found the body, the local beekeepers were nearby organizing a militant sit-in to protest the companys practices. And found on the floor near the corpse was a tract entitled, “The Bee Revolution.” Simona Tavianellos investigation gets her caught between the radical environmentalists and the powerful industrialists who are allied with the police. That would be complication enough, but she also needs to deal with the wounded ego of Cacabonda, the local police officer, who is officially in charge of the investigation.
With her sharp humor and spot-on observations of current events in Italy, can Tavianello not only solve the murder, but also discover the intriguing reason behind the disappearance of the bees?
"A scathing look at Italian bureaucracy adds to the charm of Quadruppani's wryly comic Commissario Simona Tavianello mystery, his first to be published in English. On a vacation in Italy's Piedmont region, Simona and her retired police chief husband, Marco, stop at a cottage to buy some honey and find a body. The couple plan to continue their travels after notifying the police, but the discovery that the victim was shot with Simona's gun ensures their continuing involvement in the case. Simona soon learns that the dead man is an engineer whose company manufactures genetically modified seeds and pesticides. Suspicion immediately falls on the cottage's owner, the head of a militant environmentalist organization. Two towering personalities Simona herself, shrewd and relentless, and Maresciallo Calabonda, the rural police chief who's far from the country bumpkin he appears to be dominate the investigation, supported by colorful locals, including a shy reporter and an Albanian shepherd. Agent: Sophie Schiavo, French Publishers Agency. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Readers can expect the trademark pleasures of the Italian countryside: great scenery, great food, and great conversazione." Kirkus Reviews
"Its very real seductiveness lies in its ironic description of issues that are secondary to the investigation." —Le Monde
About the Author
Serge Quadruppani is a renowned author of militant crime novels and a translator from Italian (authors Camilleri, Evangelisti, De Cataldo, Carlotto, Fois, and more). He is a regular contributor to Le Monde diplomatique and is director of the Italian collection at Editions Métailié.Delia Casa holds a Master's in Italian from the University of Chicago. She is the recipient of an Italian Fulbright teaching grant.