Death in Venice

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Death in Venice

The Seamier Side

My book club just finished Death in Venice by Thomas Mann. It got me to fantasizing about Venice, which is absolutely on my bucket list. I'm sure your image of Venice includes St. Mark's and the Grand Canal. A little (or a lot of) art, a little (or a lot of) music, and a whole lot of sitting in cafes, and one's visit (or at least mine) would be complete. Leave it to mystery writers to introduce readers to a slightly less romantic view of Venice.

Dead Lagoon, by Michael Dibdin, is the fourth installment in the Aurelio Zen series. To improve his finances, Zen arranges to investigate a murder in Venice. Between the ostensible reason he is there and the covert reason, his life quickly gets very complicated. He returns to Rome with a completely different view of who he is.

Donna Leon has written a series of mysteries featuring Venice and Detective Guido Brunetti.  The first book in the series is Death at La Fenice. An orchestra conductor dies of cyanide poisoning, and Brunetti struggles to rule out suspects so that he can focus his investigation.

Readers are introduced to Homer and Mary Kelly by Jane Langton in Thief of Venice. While Homer attends a rare book conference, Mary photographs Venice. When a missing woman appears in the background of one of Mary's photographs, the hunt for missing artifacts and a murderer begins.

The main character of Beverle Graves Myers' Interrupted Aria is Tito, a castrato. He returns to his native Venice, intent on making his professional reputation. During his premier performance, one friend is murdered and another friend is falsely accused of the crime. Tito is determined to find the real murderer. This is the first in a series.

Precious lives in Paris and is an antiques dealer. After she seemingly meets the man of her dreams, she gets a telegram from her cousin in Shanghai saying "Meet me in Venice." Elizabeth Adler's Meet Me in Venice takes readers through the many twists and turns of Precious' journey of discovery.

In Book of Unholy Mischief, Elle Newmark introduces readers to Luciano, a chef's apprentice in Reniassance Venice. After Luciano witnesses a murder in the dining room where he works, he also begins to hear rumors about a book which reputedly contains all the secrets of alchemy. Ever curious, Luciano tries to discover the truth behind both the murder and the book.