Title : Murder in Venice
Author: Maria Luisa Minarelli
Publisher: Amazon Publishing UK
Genre : Historical Fiction/Mystery
Date of Publication: August 2019
Number of Pages: 294
My Rating: 4 out of 5
Murder in Venice is a historical fiction novel set in picturesque Venice in the 1750s. It revolves around a murder investigation carried out by Marco Pisani, who is an avagadore (high magistrate of Venice).
When an apprentice stumbles upon a dead body on the streets on his way to work early one morning, Marco is called in to prepare the trial and prosecution charges. The dead man, Barbaro is an impoverished noble.
What at first seems to be an open and shut case of a robbery that has gone badly turns into something else when two more bodies are found. With the invaluable aid of his lawyer friend Zen, his resourceful gondolier, Nani and the beautiful Chiara, Marco sets out to uncover the truth.
As Marco works to solve the mystery, we are able to see his exceptional thoroughness and his remarkable dedication to his job. What he discovers challenges the very core of his beliefs and eventually he finds himself torn between his duties as an avagadore and his sense of morality.
This book is the first in a series. It was originally written in Italian. The author gives us a glimpse into the lives of the Venetian people during the 1750s. Venice is no longer the center of commerce that it used to be. As a result, many nobles who relied on trade with the Orient for their livelihood find themselves without the trade interests that sustained them.
The author develops the story against this background. She demonstrates to us how the fortunes of the people have declined. Venice is a city that was once a ‘world leader in civilization and wealth’ but whose citizens now live in abject poverty.
I liked the vivid description of Venice at the time. I was transported into the lives of the people and got a good understanding of issues like the place of women in society and the power of the noble families.
The story is well-paced and interesting and kept me engaged until the end. It was easy to read and follow, and I loved the ending. I rate it 4 out of 5 and recommend it to anyone who loves mysteries and historical fiction.
Thanks to the publishers and Netgalley for a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.