Donna Leon's books are more than just police procedurals books that take place in Venice. They always, in my experience, deal with an issue confronting Italy and there's always a sub-current of corruption. In this book, she tackles the difficult subject of street peddlers, quasi-immigrants from Africa who buy knock-off bags cheap and then resell them to tourists.
Two American tourists, both physicians, see an immigrant, ostensibly from Sierra Leone, assassinated in the square. The case, as you might suspect, revolves around the sale of "blood" diamonds. The characters, now familiar after having read at least 10 in the series, are used by Leon as springboards to focus on an issue in addition to the ubiquitous Italian corruption.
The Leon books will not please readers who prefer chases, gun shots, and action. If you like characterization, fine writing, and intriguing stories, I recommend this series highly. Well read by David Colacci although he will never replace Anna Fields, aka Kate Fleming.
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