Sunday, 4 November 2012

Medusa (Aurelio Zen, #9)Medusa by Michael Dibdin
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Dibdin wrote six books featuring Detective Aurelio Zen, A Rome policeman. His main character is portrayed as flawed and human, buffeted by the often conflicting demands of his superior officer and the Minister of Justice. He walks a narrow line between the two, somehow remaining reasonable honest and reasonably effective, not always intentionally. He is a very likable character.

Medusa is my favorite among these books. The plot is convoluted and has as many twists and turns as the snakes on Medusa’s head, hence the classical allusion of the title. But this is not the reason I recommend this book. Simply put, it contains some of the most beautiful, most evocative writing I’ve read in recent years. The opening scene places us in a dense fog in Milan. The setting is described so beautifully one can almost see and feel the damp of it. We experience it through the eyes of a character who is not long to be with us, one who is followed by death. It is an eerie and effective opening to an interesting and compelling book. A highly recommended read.

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Blair McDowell