The Golden Egg
Commissario Guido Brunetti rides again!
Donna Leon is an American who has lived in Venice for the past 30 years. Obviously, she got hooked by the place. Read her novels to feel her passion for all things Venetian, the city, its vistas, its ambiance, its culture and its persona.
The Golden Egg may not be the best of her Brunetti series, but like the city itself, it remains a charmer. The story unfolds with the inspector following up on a prod by his wife relating to the death of a supposedly retarded man, dying unnoticed, his life seemingly of no significance to anyone. Not even the bureaucratic offices of the city or government have a record of this man. No birth certificate, no school records, no medical appointments, nothing…it’s as if this poor man did not even exist.
The book’s sad premise that someone dies with no one at all seeming to care or taking notice, sparks an investigation into one of the oldest aristocratic families in the city. Why are they involved? What was their connection with the dead man? Stranger still as Inspector Brunetti begins investigating, he finds even the man’s own mother refuses to divulge the truth behind her son’s life and his death.
A sad tale but another charming read by Donna Leon.
I recommend this book conditionally. Read it if you enjoy writing which:
flows smoothly, with polish;
does not require referral to a dictionary;
isn’t pretentious and esoteric;
doesn’t push the envelopes of eroticism, exoticism, and existentialism;
Donna will do it for you if you like to be entertained with polished prose written in a style that doesn’t require frequent stops to ask yourself what has just been written. She entertains her readers…PERIOD !