A Sea of Troubles

A Commissario Guido Brunetti Mystery

Book 10
Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
19
Free sample

An Italian police detective looks into the deaths of two fishermen in an isolated island community: “Leon’s Venetian mysteries never disappoint.” —The New York Times Book Review
 
On a beautiful spring morning on the island of Pellestrina, south of the Lido on the Venetian lagoon, a small boat moored at the docks suddenly explodes, killing two local clam fishermen. When it becomes clear that the fire was deliberately set, Brunetti decides to investigate. But when he tries to dig up information about the murder, the island’s tight-knit, closemouthed community closes ranks—forcing Brunetti to accept Signorina Elettra’s offer to visit her relatives there to search for clues.
 
On the island, Brunetti finds himself torn between his duty to solve the murders and his concerns for the Signorina’s safety. And though he is loyal to his beloved wife, Brunetti’s concern for his boss’s spirited secretary may be driven by more than platonic feeling . . .
 
“The arrival of a new Donna Leon book fills me with pleasurable anticipation. She tells a good story, including the best of all current police detectives, Commissario Brunetti, and locates it in a superbly described Venice. The plot is beautifully constructed. The climax is exciting and disturbing . . . Brunetti is as irresistible as ever.” —The Scotsman
 
“The sophisticated but still moral Brunetti, with his love of food and his loving family, proves a worthy custodian of timeless values and verities.” —TheWall Street Journal
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Additional Information

Publisher
Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
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Published on
Aug 25, 2009
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Pages
256
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ISBN
9780802199003
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Crime
Fiction / Mystery & Detective / International Mystery & Crime
Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Police Procedural
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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The daughter who nobody wanted learns the truth about the mother she never knew. A page-turning, heart-breaking mystery 'full of surprises ... this is a classic whodunit' (Scotsman).

Cal McGill is a unique investigator and oceanographer who uses his expertise to locate things - and sometimes people - lost or missing at sea.

His expertise could unravel the haunting mystery of why, twenty-six years ago on a remote Scottish beach, Megan Bates strode out into the cold ocean and let the waves wash her away.

Megan's daughter, Violet Wells, was abandoned as a baby on the steps of a local hospital just hours before the mother she never knew took her own life.

As McGill is drawn into Violet's search for the truth, he encounters a coastal community divided by obsession and grief, and united only by a conviction that its secrets should stay buried...

Praise for The Woman Who Walked into the Sea:

'An always entertaining and gripping mystery ... Infinitely better written than the majority of its competitors' Herald

'A classic whodunit. A mystery from the school of Ruth Rendell, and I can't imagine anyone who likes those not delighting in this' Scotsman

'Cal McGill is a triumph ... a wonderfully unique creation' crimefictionlover.com

'Simply intoxicating' Library Journal

Praise for The Sea Detective:

'Raises the bar for Scottish crime fiction ... elegantly written and compelling' Scotsman

'Promises to be a fine series of detective novels' Sunday Times Crime Book of the Month

'Excellent' Literary Review - top five crime books of the year

'A compelling protagonist' The Times Literary Supplement

Award-winning CNN journalist Kitty Pilgrim turns her talents to print in The Explorer’s Code, an exciting international thriller that revolves around the quest for a land deed valuable enough to kill for.

This enhanced e-book includes five videos that explain more about oceanography, archaeology, the 1918 flu pandemic, Victorian painting, and the international seed vault. A short interview with Kitty will introduce these videos and provide an introduction to Kitty, how she came to write this book, and set the stage for the videos. These topics are discussed in this entertaining, informative novel filled with action and adventure as well as glamour, romance and international intrigue.

When the renowned young oceanographer Cordelia Stapleton receives an invitation to accept an award on behalf of her great-great-grandfather, a famous Victorian polar explorer, she has no idea her life is about to change dramatically. John Sinclair—a dashing, wealthy archaeologist and philanthropist—presents Cordelia with the award at the glamorous Oceanographic Institute Ball in Monaco. He also gives her a journal that her greatgreat- grandfather wrote in 1908. An orphan with very few family belongings, Cordelia is amazingly touched to have this precious heirloom. Once the journal is in her possession, Cordelia learns that she is heir to the land on which the Global Seed Vault in Norway sits. The valuable deed for this land, or at least a clue to its whereabouts, may be hidden in the journal.

When the journal disappears from Cordelia’s stateroom on the Queen Victoria and Cordelia receives threatening e-mails, it becomes clear that she is in danger. John Sinclair comes to Cordelia’s aid, helping her search for the missing journal and land deed, and capturing her heart. As they race to find the deed, Cordelia and Sinclair encounter a team of British virologists trying to decode the genome of the 1918 influenza pandemic, but unearthing infected tissue samples may prove more lethal than curative. Cordelia and Sinclair sail through the Mediterranean from Monaco to an archaeological site in Ephesus, Turkey. They travel to a beautiful old Parisian home and a lavish estate in the British countryside. Their search culminates in the high Arctic archipelago of Svalbard, not far from the North Pole. Behind them every step of the way are a consortium of Russian underworld criminals, religious fanatics from Texas, a sinister botanist, and a sexy American spy, all hunting for the deed, all pursuing Cordelia.

The Explorer’s Code is a satisfying blend of historical detail, fast-paced action, scientific discovery, and the thrill of exploration that informs as well as entertains. The breathtaking ending in the high Arctic is as chilling as a polar breeze.
CNN veteran Kitty Pilgrim returns with her second novel featuring the beautiful young oceanographer Cordelia Stapleton and the dashing, urbane archaeologist John Sinclair. Set in the international art world, The Stolen Chalice takes readers across the globe. Bombings, kidnappings, and Sinclair’s old love conspire against the couple as they search for valuable Egyptian art.

The black-tie gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art promises to be a star-studded evening. Cordelia Stapleton and John Sinclair have flown in from Alexandria, Egypt, to help celebrate ancient Greek, Roman, and Egyptian culture with New York’s elite. The influential crowd of artists, collectors, scientists, and New York society dine and dance at the museum’s historic Temple of Dendur, unaware that terrorists are planning to attack. Fortunately, museum security and police stop the terrorists, but the evening is a disaster.

The next morning, Cordelia and Sinclair learn that an art theft ring struck New York while they were at the museum. All over the city, pieces of Egyptian art have been stolen. Ted VerPlanck—a pillar of New York society whom Cordelia met the night before—discovers that his penthouse apartment was robbed and the legendary Sardonyx Cup, an ancient Egyptian chalice, is missing. Ted asks John Sinclair to help him recover his precious artifact.

Despite Cordelia’s objections, Sinclair calls on his old flame the Egyptologist Dr. Holly Graham to help find the chalice. They discover the stolen art is being sold on the black market to fund an international terrorist group. The group’s leader, a sinister Egyptian anarchist, and his aristocratic British partner, Lady Xandra Sommerset, are planning a biological-weapon attack to topple the major governments of the world.

Aided by British and American security forces, Sinclair sets out to find the missing art, which holds clues to where and when the attack will take place. Pieces of stolen art are scattered around the world. The action moves from a sprawling ranch in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, to a castle on Scotland’s rugged coastline, a beautiful two-hundred-foot yacht in the Mediterranean, the mysterious canals of Venice, the premier beach resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, and ultimately Cairo. Romance sizzles as Sinclair, Cordelia, and Holly Graham are caught in a love triangle, distracted by their emotions, and unknowingly moving closer to mortal danger.

Superstition and science meet head-on. And one question remains unanswered—does the Sardonyx Cup have special powers?
As the novel opens, a doctor arrives at the apartment of Maria Grazia Battestini, an elderly shut-in who is hated by everyone around her (including her only surviving relative, her neice) for her miserly, spiteful ways. The doctor dreads his task of visiting her once a week, since she is always complaining about her Romanian illegal-immigrant housekeeper etc. But on this visit the doctor finds Battestini brutally murdered, having been struck by a blunt object in the skull. He immediately reports the murder to the police and the second Lieutenant Scarpa hears that the old lady had a Romanian housekeeper, they assume she was the murderer. He has his men check all of the trains leaving the city and sure enough, the housekeeper, whose name is Flori, is found on the train with a purse containing 600 euros. While she is being questioned by Scarpa's arrogant men, however, she fleas, only to be struck by a train on the opposite track. Scarpa, satisfied that Flori murdered Battestini, decides not to pursue any other suspects.
Weeks later, the old lady's neighbor, Signora Gismondi, returns from a trip to London to discover that the old lady is dead and the housekeeper was named the murderer. She calls the police to plead otherwise: on the day of the murder, the housekeeper had been fired and locked out of her house by the old lady, upon which Signora Gismondi had given her some money and offered to take her to the train station so that she could return to her native Romania. Gismondi had personally driven the housekeeper to the station, and had dropped her off there in a calm state, meaning it was unlikely that she committed the
murder before leaving to Romania.

Scarpa, however, is convinced that Signora Gismondi is lying. Like most of his colleagues, he is a lazy, distrustful, unimaginative police officer who wants to find the easiest solution rather than truly investigating. On the other hand, Commissario Guido Brunetti believes that the woman is telling the truth. He realizes that although he is not assigned to the case, it is his duty to follow through with the woman's tip and find the real killer.

After questioning Gismondi, Brunetti searches Battestini's apartmenting, finding among her papers an odd one that seems to be written in code. He takes it back to the office and someone realizes it is a list of bank account numbers. Signorina Elettra, a desk worker who used to work at a bank and is an expert in computer hacking, examines the accounts and discovers that someone had been depositing a fixed monthly amount into each of the right up until the day after the woman's death, when an unknown person consolidated all the accounts and moved them to an offshore account.

Commissario Brunetti questions Battestini's lawyer, the woman who was encharged with all of her affairs. She confesses that she was the one who moved the accounts offshore, but that Signora Battestini never told her the source of the payments.

In questioning people, Brunetti learns more about Battestini's son, who died five years earlier. Rumors circulate that he was gay and died of AIDS. Battestini's mail carrier reveals that once she was delivering his mail and a pornographic magazine depicting adolescent boys slipped out of its bag. Brunetti also learns that the son worked for the school board. Meanwhile Battestini's doctor reveals that he once heard Battestini brag that her son took very good care of her. Brunetti begins to wonder if perhaps the son was responsible for the deposits in Battestini's accounts.

Brunetti begins to suspect that the son was blackmailing someone involved with the board of education, where he used to work. So he interviews the director of the board of ed, Signor Rossi. Signor Rossi says he didn't really know the son, but Brunetti suspects he is lying. Brunetti returns to Battestini's old apartment (where she was murdered) and when he looks in the attic, he finds that it has been ransacked. Someone has come here looking for something. Accidentally, he breaks a statue of the Madonna and inside of it he finds a piece of paper. It is a letter from Signor Rossi (the board of ed director)'s old school saying that they have no record of him every having received a doctorate there. Suddenly, Brunetti puts it all together: Battestini's son, when he was an assistant at the board of ed and Signor Rossi applied for the job there, received this letter and rather than taking it to his superior, decided to blackmail Signor Rossi. Signor Rossi had been paying Battestini off ever since. When Battestini found out that Signor Rossi was angling for a promotion, she decided to invite him to her house to ask him for more money. He couldn't afford it, and she threatened to go public with the information that he was a fraud. He became enraged and killed her.

In the last scene, Brunetti forces Rossi to confess. Because of the quirks of the Italian legal system, he will probably not have to serve much time, and so Bruneeeeeetti, though he is not religious, tries to console himself in the assurance of his wife that a higher power will sort it out in the end.

The #1 international-bestselling tale of greed, violence, and corporate power from the master of Scandinavian noir: “One of his best” (The Times, London).
 
After killing a man in the line of duty, Inspector Kurt Wallander finds himself deep in a personal and professional crisis; during more than a year of sick leave, he turns to drink and vice to quiet his lingering demons. Once he pulls himself together, he vows to quit the Ystad police force for good—just before a friend who had asked Wallander to look into the death of his father winds up dead himself, shot three times.
 
Far from leaving police work behind, Wallander instead must investigate a formidable suspect: a powerful business tycoon at the helm of a multinational company engaged in extralegal activities. Ann-Britt Höglund, the department’s first female detective, proves to be Wallander’s best ally as he tries to pierce the smiling façade of the suspicious mogul. But just as he comes close to uncovering the truth, Wallander finds his own life being threatened.
 
In this “exquisitely plotted” thriller, Henning Mankell’s mastery of the modern police procedural—which has earned him legions of fans worldwide and inspired the BBC show Wallander starring Kenneth Branagh—is on vivid display (Publishers Weekly).
 
“This is crime fiction of the highest order.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review
 
“Compelling . . . Skillfully plotted and suspenseful. . . . A thriller for the thinking reader.”
—The Dallas Morning News
 
“Mankell’s novels are a joy.” —USA Today
 
“Absorbing. . . . In the masterly manner of P.D. James, Mankell projects his hero’s brooding thoughts onto nature itself.” —The New York Times
 
“Wallander is a loveable gumshoe. . . . He is one of the most credible creations in contemporary crime fiction.” —The Guardian
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