Donna Leon’s Commissario Guido Brunetti mysteries have won legions of fans for their evocative portraits of Venetian life. In her novels, home-cooked food, family, renaissance art, Italian history, and local politics play as central a role as an unsolved crime. The Girl of His Dreams opens with a major event in Brunetti’s family, and keeps the theme of family close to the fore.
When a friend of Guido Brunetti’s brother, a priest recently returned from years of missionary work in Africa, calls on the Commissario with a request, Brunetti suspects the man has hidden motives. An American-style Christian sect has begun meeting in private homes in the city, and it’s possible the priest is merely apprehensive of the competition. Nevertheless, Brunetti and his wife, Paola, decide to go undercover. But when a girl’s body is found floating in a canal, Brunetti must put everything aside to investigate the secretive world of her people, the gypsies, who exist on the fringes of society. Thought provoking, eye opening, and profoundly moving, The Girl of His Dreams is classic Donna Leon—and a spectacular, heart-wrenching addition to the series.
“A showcase of nuanced characterization, acute observation and seamless plotting.”—The Washington Post