In September of 1740, singer Tito Amato receives a curious invitation. The German composer Karl Johann Weber is rehearsing a new opera at an isolated villa nestled in the hills of the Venetian mainland. Would Tito accept the lead role? Puzzled by the air of secrecy that enshrouds the production, but attracted by a generous fee, Tito agrees. Artist Gussie Rumbolt, Titos friend and brother-in-law, has also been summoned to paint scenes of the estates grape harvest. The two men find the countryside awash with the golden hues of autumn, but the bucolic mood quickly turns menacing when a notorious figure from Titos past turns up at the villa. That night, at the stroke of twelve, a soprano stumbles over a stranger who has been beaten to death with the clock pendulum. With the local constable away on a boar hunt, the midnight murderer strikes with impunity, raising terror to a fevered crescendo. Ever faithful to the ideals of truth and justice, Tito pursues his own quest for answersa quest that leads straight into the painful secrets of his heart and beyond. The Iron Tongue of Midnight is the fourth novel in Myers Baroque Mystery series. It follows Cruel Music.
About the Author
Beverle Graves Myers is the author of the Baroque Mystery series featuring Tito Amato. Her novels and short stories have earned nominations for the Macavity, Derringer, and Kentucky Literary Awards. A retired psychiatrist, Bev is also a lifelong opera lover and avid traveler. She lives in Louisville, Kentucky with her husband, Lawrence.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
These books that feature Tito Amato as the detective are set in 18th C. Venice. They are lots of fun. I love them. Tito is a famous castrato and many of the settings and situations involve musical venues and performers. Try to read the series in order because characters advance in their relationships and past events are harkened back to in subsequent books. I have a hard time finding this writer anywhere but online. Don't know why she isn't carried in the stores -- or the library. I stumbled across the first book and am so glad I did.
In 1740, German composer Karl Johann Weber invites renowned singer Tito Amato to play the lead in a new opera he is producing. Tito is euphoric although his brother in law Gussie Rumbolt points out the role of Tamerlano the lusty Mongol conqueror seems off note for a castrato, but Tito insists the exorbitant fee will cover any shortcomings. Gussie, who also has been hired to paint scenes, accompanies Tito to the isolated Venetian Villa Dolfini where Weber is leading rehearsals in stark secrecy. That night as Gussie and Tito share a room in the villa, soprano Carmela Costa screams. The bloodcurdling screech wakes everyone up. Lying at her ankle is a corpse apparently beaten to death with a nearby clock pendulum. No one can identify the victim and a check of his pockets does not help as they are totally empty. They send for the High Constable Captain Forti, but he is away. As other midnight killings follow, Tito investigates not knowing when he made that decision his inquiries will turn introspectively personal. --- The latest Baroque Mystery (see INTERRUPTED ARIA, PAINTED VEIL, and CRUEL MUSIC) is an excellent historical whodunit that uses an eighteenth century villa to serve as a sort of locked room. Tito is terrific as an amateur sleuth struggling with a case in which motive seems impossible to find since the first deceased is unknown. Besides an entertaining mystery, the story line brings to life the musical side of Venice and to a lesser degree Constantinople through the writings of Tito¿s brother Alessandro. Readers will sing the praise of Beverle Graves Myers who makes a night at the opera fun. --- Harriet Klausner