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A Death in Tuscany    by Michele Giuttari order for
Death in Tuscany
by Michele Giuttari
Order:  USA  Can
Little, Brown & Co., 2012 (2009)
Paperback, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

When a young girl's body is found in the Tuscan hill town of Scandicci, police officers attribute the death to a drug overdose and don't give it much attention. That is, until Chief Superintendent Michele Ferrara, head of Florence's Squadra Mobile, takes an interest in the case, disturbed by the girl's youth and the fact that no-one has come forward to identify her.

Careful police work gradually uncovers concerns about the child's treatment in hospital. Ferrara works closely with Deputy Prosecutor Anna Giulietti on the case and finds links to Freemasons and to marble dust. While this develops, he's shocked to learn that his best friend Massimo is missing and is being sought by the police (along with a woman, Simonetta Palladiani) in connection with the suspicious death of her husband. Investigating this also (with the full support of his wife Petra) and convinced of his friend's innocence, Ferrara is soon in trouble with his superiors.

Gradually, the two cases merge to reveal a 'complex tangle of drugs, paedophiles and Mafiosi', along with shocking corruption in very high places. Ferrara's determination to save his friend launches him on a race against time, to find Massimo before his superiors shut him down. He finds help from a surprising source. If you enjoy a solid police procedural in an exotic setting, and with a likeable lead, don't miss A Death in Tuscany.

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