The Paper Moon (Inspector Montalbano Series #9)

The Paper Moon (Inspector Montalbano Series #9)


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780143113003
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/01/2008
Series: Inspector Montalbano Series , #9
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 232,659
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.80(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Andrea Camilleri's Montalbano mystery series, bestsellers in Italy and Germany, has been adapted for Italian television and translated into German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Greek, Japanese, Dutch, and Swedish. He lives in Rome.
Stephen Sartarelli lives in upstate New York.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Camilleri is as crafty and charming a writer as his protagonist is an investigator."
-The Washington Post

"Montalbano is a delightful creation."
-USA Today

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Paper Moon (Inspector Montalbano Series #9) 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
cathyskye on LibraryThing 3 months ago
First Line: The alarm rang, as it had done every morning for the past year, at seven-thirty.The moody Inspector Salvo Montalbano has been plagued by the sense of his own mortality of late. He's trying to dodge all those morbid questions floating around in his mind-- without much success-- so what he needs is a good murder to take his mind off death. This he gets when the body of a man-- shot in the face at point-blank range-- with his pants down around his ankles is found.Montalbano soon has more than enough to occupy his mind with the victim's beautiful sister, the victim's beautiful girlfriend, cocaine, blackmail letters, and mysterious computer codes all complicating the investigation. Not to fear, though-- allow Montalbano to cogitate while digesting an excellent meal, and the killer will soon be in jail.Although the first book in the series was rather shaky for me, I am so glad that I continued because this is now one of my absolute favorite series. Montalbano and his team of officers are all gems, and Stephen Sartarelli does a perfect job of translating colloquial dialogue. (By the way, my husband is another huge fan of this series.) How Sartarelli manages to imply regional Sicilian speech and yet keep the meaning completely clear for English speakers is beyond me. The man is a master!The mystery isn't all that difficult to solve, but that's not the point. The point is being able to watch grumpy Inspector Montalbano distracted by two pretty girls. You know that, sooner or later, the pheromones are going to lose their effect, and the wily Sicilian policeman is going to figure everything out. The joy is in watching him do it.
bcquinnsmom on LibraryThing 3 months ago
The Paper Moon is Montalbano's ninth adventure, and we find our irascible hero becoming more obsessed with aging and trying to get past thoughts of when his "dying day comes." Actually, Montalbano is only in his fifties, so his worries might be a bit premature, and obviously he may think he's losing it, but his performance on this very odd case leaves the reader begging to differ. Even Livia thinks he's demented.Sgt. Caterella brings in a woman to see Montalbano at the station. Mimi Augello, on whom Salvo would prefer to dump the visitor, is home with his baby, waiting for the doctor. Fazio is involved in a drug overdose case, so the Inspector is the only one left. As it turns out, the woman, Michela Pardo, is there to report her brother Angelo's disappearance. Because Angelo is an adult and may have gotten it into his head to just go away for a while, Montalbano explains that he can't move on the case right away, but Michela's worries are so intense that he agrees to meet her at her brother's apartment later that evening. When they go into the apartment, there's no sign of Angelo, until Montalbano sees a small recess in the wall with a staircase within. At the top of the stairs is a room on the terrace, to which Michela has no key. Salvo breaks down the door and discovers Angelo's body -- collapsed in the armchair with half of his face blown off, his zipper opened and a certain part of his anatomy hanging out. Right away Michela accuses her brother's girlfriend Elena of the crime, but as the investigation proceeds, Montalbano's not so sure. Angelo has his own secrets that may or may not be relevant to the crime, and the Inspector will leave no stone unturned until he gets to the truth. In the meantime, Salvo continues to stress over growing old, is called to the Commissioner's office several times to find that the meetings are continually postponed, and has to fend off unwanted advances from a woman with carte blanche to have affairs. And there's a delightfully funny moment when of all things, Montalbano dresses a piece of salmon with lemon juice and olive oil.Again, I have to admit to have sort of figured out parts of this plot midstream -- not all, but a couple of key pieces of the core mystery. I think once you're read so many of these and have got the pattern down, it's less difficult to figure out where Camilleri is going with his crime elements. But as noted above, it's not just the crime that keeps drawing me back. By now Montalbano is more along the lines of an old friend who I feel like checking in on now and then, just to see what he's up to. I also think it makes a big difference as a reader when you read the entire series pretty much back to back in publication order, because there is little variance in the rather formulaic construction of these novel from book to book. I love the political critiques, the food, the characters and I feel like every time I'm reading one of these books, Sicily becomes more and more familiar to me. Most of all, I really like Montalbano -- his humor, his compassion, and everything else. If anyone reading this is considering Camilleri's books, don't start with this one that is nearing the end -- take the time to go back to the beginning of it all.
cameling on LibraryThing 3 months ago
Our dear Inspector Salvo Montalbano is approached by a woman desperate for his assistance because her dear brother has been missing for 2 days, and as he accompanies her to her brother's apartment to search the place, they find him in a chair with his face shot off.The investigation into the murder leads to many sharp twists and turns. As suspects are considered and a motive for the murder contemplated, the victim's hidden life starts to emerge. Montalbano sifts through the clues and you see him look at them from all angles before he puts it in boxes he keeps in his head, to be taken out from time to time like odd pieces in a jigsaw puzzle, and placed against other odd pieces to see if they will fit and form a more comprehensible picture.In the midst of the investigation, a couple of influential political figures are found dead as a result of a dose of poorly cut cocaine. But is there even a link to the dead man Montalbano found?We are not who we always present ourselves to be, and sometimes the secrets will surface and prove to be our undoing.This book had me in its grips from the get go and also chuckling at some of the more humorous moments.
Joycepa on LibraryThing 3 months ago
No. 9 in the Inspector Montalbani series.Until this installment, Camilleri¿s series was¿and remains¿unique in that its single most outstanding characteristic is a gusto for life. The protagonist, Sicilian Inspector Salvo Montalbano, is moody, as changeable as the weather¿passionate, highly moral in his work, a cowardly liar when he feels it necessary in his relationship with his lover Livia, a gourmand and glutton, compassionate jealous, intuitive, sarcastic, protective of his police officers, stubborn, well-read¿the list goes on and on. He seems to be larger than life and yet totally believable.Camilleri takes the same approach with his wonderful cast of recurring characters, although on a more minor scale: Fazio, the sergeant, Mimí Augello, Montalbano¿s second-in-command, Catarella the foolish, bumbling officer who has his own take on the Italian language and police procedure, Dr. Pasquano the coroner, Livia, Adelina his housekeeper, Nicoló Zito the Communist TV announcer, and many, many others. Vigáta, Montalbano¿s headquarters, positively comes alive, as does the Sicilian landscape in general. Throughout the books are running commentaries from Montalbano¿s (liberal) point of view on current-day Italian politics. The books vibrate with life and energy.As well as the recurring characters, the once-off ones are also handled brilliantly.And the books have been hysterically funny. Camilleri taught stage direction for over 20 years, and it shows, both in the way he sets his scenes and the way he uses comedy. I have read the books in this series at least 3 times, some of them more often, and it makes no difference¿I have laughed so hard in my recent rereading, for instance, of Rounding the Mark, that I could barely breathe. His touch just borders on slapstick but does not fall over the line¿it¿s far more Shakespearean and extremely effective.To top it all off, the plotting is excellent; for the most part, the stories are engrossing.Therefore it was a shock to my system when I read The Paper Moon.The humor is gone. We¿re left with Montalbano¿s sarcasm with not a shred of his sense of the ridiculous to balance it off. Catarella becomes a computer-obsessed maniac instead of a Shakespearean fool. Food, an important minor part of the series (treated in such a way that you want to move to Sicily immediately), is barely mentioned. Recurring characters, such as Mimí Augello and Fazio are much reduced in presence; Mimí, a new father, is made out to be a nitwit. Livia appears only in brief phone conversations.Everything, in other words, is subdued, especially Montalbano himself. Instead, the book centers yes, on the plot, which is one of his best, but also on Montalbano¿s angst about aging and to a lesser extent, death. While this does not interfere with the story¿indeed, it is a crucial part of it¿there is almost nothing left of the old Montalbano except his irritation and sarcasm.Two things save this book: the plot and the handling of the two women who, with Montalbano himself, are the center of attention.The story begins with the report of a missing person by his sister; the brother turns to have been murdered under embarrassing circumstances. The major suspect is his mistress. Both women are drawn beautifully and powerfully. Other, drug-related deaths, some of them powerful political figures, add to the mix and the pressures on Montalbano to solve the crime become nearly unbearable.This is the matrix for Montalbano¿s introspection over his aging and his inner questioning of whether he himself is really capable of carrying on effectively in his job.Overall, it feels as if Camilleri is getting tired of this series and is preparing the way out for Montalbano. A good story, but not up to his usual spectacularly high standard.