Things are not going well for Inspector Salvo Montalbano. His relationship with Livia is once again on the rocks, and, acutely aware of his age, he is beginning to grow weary of the endless violence he encounters. Then a young woman is found dead, her face half shot off, and there is no hint of her identity except a tattoo of a sphinx moth. The tattoo links her to three similarly marked girls, all victims of the underworld sex trade, who have been rescued from the Mafia nightclub circuit by a prominent Catholic charity. The problem is that Montalbano's inquiries elicit an outcry from the Church-and the three other girls are all missing.
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by Andrea Camilleri
"Grover Gardner is the perfect performer for Camilleri's series, giving a slyly funny reading of Inspector Montalbano and the Sicilian cops he works with. For instance, he gives the imbecile desk sergeant who can't spell, write clearly, or ever get a name right, an amusing Bronx accent. Great performance, but therein lies a problem. If Catarella is such a buffoon, why does he have a job? The writing (and/or translation) is clunky, and the plotting either predictable or unbelievable, not a good combination. The titular sphinx is a four-winged moth tattooed on a naked dead girl found in a dump on the first page or so. What follows doesn't quite succeed as farce or thriller, but Gardner keeps the experience fairly painless for the listener. B.G. (c) AudioFile 2010, Portland, Maine"
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