Sunday, 14 April 2013

Books to Look Forward to From Europa Editions

Ricciardi sees and hears the final seconds in the lives of victims of violent deaths.  It is both a gift and a curse.  It has helped him become one of the most acute and successful homicide detectives in Naples police force.  But it has taken an emotional toll on him.  He drinks too much and sleeps too little.  Other than his loyal friend Brigadier Maione, he has no friends.  Naples, 1931, in a dingy apartment in a poor neighbourhood the victim, Carmela Calise an elderly woman moonlighting as a fortune-teller and moneylender has been viciously beaten to death.  Then Ricciardi and his deputy Maione arrive at the scene and start asking questions no one wants to answer.  In her decrepit apartment, she would receive clients, among them, some of the city’s rich and powerful, predicting their futures in such a way as to manipulate and deceive.  She had many enemies, those who have been manipulated by her lies, disappointed by her prophecies or destroyed by her machinations.  Blood Curse: The Springtime of Commissario Ricciard is the second book in the Commissario Ricciard series by Maurizio de Giovanni and is due to be published in May 2013.

Garlic, Basil and Sweet Basil is by Jean-Claude Izzo and is due to be published in May 2013.  Available for the first time in English in Howard Curtis's brilliant translation this collection of personal essays shows Izzo at his most contemplative and insightful.  He writes beautifully about the city he loved, the sea to which he belonged, and the literary movement that made him famous.  A must-read for all lovers of Izzo's Marseilles Trilogy.

Giorgio Pellegrini, the unforgettable hero of The Goodbye Kiss, has been living an "honest" life for eleven 
years.  But that's about to change.  His lawyer has been deceiving him and now Giorgio is forced into service as an unwilling errand boy for an organised crime syndicate.  At one time, Giorgio wouldn't have thought twice about robbing, kidnapping and killing in order to get what he wanted, but these days he realises he's too old in the tooth to face his enemies head-on.  To return to his peaceful life as a successful businessman he's going to have to find another way to shake off the mob.  Fortunately, though Giorgio’s circumstances may have changed, deep down he’s still the ruthless killer he used to be.  At The End of a Dull Day is by Massimo Carlotto and is due to be published in May 2013.

Twenty-eight year old Jana is a Mapuche, one of those people of the earth who roamed the most fertile tracts of the South American pampas for over two thousand years before being transformed overnight into outlaws by the Argentinean constitution.  Long black hair, big almond-shaped eyes ravishing features, tall … but with small breasts, breasts that stopped growing following a violent attack by the Argentinean police when she was a child.  Jana is a sculptor who prostitutes herself down at the docks to make ends meet.  She is connected, as if by a blood bond, to Miguel, a.k.a. Paula, who also works in the docks.  When the emasculated corpse of a transvestite is found at the Port de la Boca, Jana turns for help and protection to private investigator Ruben Calderón.  Calderón.  Is a grizzled investigator who had been working tirelessly for the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, searching for any trace of los desaparecidos and their odious tormentors.  Together, Jana and Ruben will plunge into the corrupt beating heart of the Argentinian political system on the hunt for a vicious murderer. Mapuche is by Caryl Férey and is due to be published in July 2013.

For the first time, Carlo Lucarelli's entire De Luca trilogy is gathered in one omnibus edition.  In 'Carte Blanche', it is April 1945 and a brutal murder on the good side of town lands Commissario De Luca in the middle of a hornet's nest during the final frenetic days of the Salo Republic where the rich and powerful mix drugs, sex, money and murder.  In 'The Damned Season', De Luca is on the run under an assumed identity to avoid reprisals for the role he played during the Fascist dictatorship.  Blackmailed by a member of the partisan police, De Luca must investigate a series of murders, becoming a reluctant player in Italy’s post-war power struggle.  In 'Via delle Oche’, the country’s fate is soon to be decided in bitterly contested national elections and a man is found dead in a brothel in 1948.  De Luca is unwilling to look the other way when evidence in the murder points to local politicians. The Trilogy is due to be published in June 2013.
It's the middle of a long hot summer on the French Mediterranean shore.  The town is full of tourists and at the Perpignan police headquarters, Sebag and Molina, two tired cops who are being slowly devoured by dull routine and family worries, deal with the day's misdemeanours and petty complaints.  But out of the blue, a young Dutch woman is brutally murdered on a beach at Argelès, and another disappears without a trace in the alleys of the city.  A serial killer obsessed with Dutch women?  Maybe.  The media goes wild.  Gilles Sebag finds himself thrust into the middle of a diabolical game.  To come out victorious, he will have to put aside his domestic cares, forget his suspicions of his wife’s unfaithfulness, ignore his heart murmur, and get over his existential angst.  Summertime All the Cats are Bored is by Philippe Georget and is due to be published in July 2013.

The report has just landed on Commissario Martusciello’s desk is unlike any other The lifeless body of  Neapolitan singer Jerry Vialdi has been found at the Naples football stadium; another corpse, this time an unidentified woman, has been discovered in the Bentegodi Stadium in Verona.  They were left with no signs of violence: the method and the madness point to a daring challenge for the police, who has no idea where to begin.  All except for Superintendent Blanca Occhiuzzi: beautiful, blind from birth, forced by the dark that envelopes to perceive the world through four senses, she feels the fear in people, their guilt and their innocence.  It is she who takes Martusciello by the hand guiding him into the mind of a murderer with her very female, very sensual intuition.  It is as if he were the blind one.  Three, Imperfect Number is by Patrizia Rinaldi and is due to be published in August 2013.

Europa Editions are also due to reissue Jean Claude Izzo’s Marseilles Trilogy and Minotaur by Benjamin Tammuz in May 2013.

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