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Crimini: The Bitter Lemon Book of Italian Crime Fiction [Paperback]

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Item description for Crimini: The Bitter Lemon Book of Italian Crime Fiction by Giancarlo De Cataldo, Andrew Brown, Niccolo Ammaniti, Andrea Camilleri & Massimo Carlotto...

Praise for the authors:

"Niccol Ammaniti has written a deft masterpiece without a false note."-Michel Dibdin, Guardian

"The Italy of Massimo Carlotto is a different world entirely, a dangerous setting for serious crimes committed by cruel men."-The New York Times

"Andrea Camilleri writes with such vigor and wit that he deserves a place alongside Donna Leon, along with the additional advantage of an insider's sense of authenticity."-The Sunday Times

"A stunning tour de force from Carlo Lucarelli."-The Sunday Telegraph

Italy's best crime writers present nine gripping, often darkly humorous short stories with settings ranging from Milan to Palermo by way of Rome and even Guadeloupe. The mafia is not just Sicilian but also Albanian, Croatian, and Chinese.

These new stories are by Niccol Ammaniti, Andrea Camilleri, Massimo Carlotto, Marcello Fois, Carlo Lucarelli, and others. These brilliant tales do not feature psychopathic cannibals or obscure, power-mad sects but ordinary criminals: a drug-addled cosmetic surgeon, inept blackmailers, and various other low-lifes lusting after easy money.

Italian crime writing is replacing that of Scandinavia as the fastest growing in the genre. The huge success of I'm Not Scared by Niccol Ammaniti followed by the Gabriele Salvatore film of the same name took the United Kingdom and the United States by storm. Andrea Camilleri's Inspector Montalban series (with seven popular titles in English so far), Carlo Lucarelli's novels Almost Blue and Carte Blanche, and Massimo Carlotto's The Goodbye Kiss are further evidence of this surge.

Promise Angels is dedicated to bringing you great books at great prices. Whether you read for entertainment, to learn, or for literacy - you will find what you want at!

Item Specifications...

Pages   319
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1" Width: 5.25" Height: 7.75"
Weight:   0.66 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Apr 1, 2008
Publisher   Bitter Lemon Press
ISBN  1904738265  
ISBN13  9781904738268  

Availability  0 units.

More About Giancarlo De Cataldo, Andrew Brown, Niccolo Ammaniti, Andrea Camilleri & Massimo Carlotto

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! The editor (and contributor of one of the stories) Giancarlo De Cataldo is a judge at the appeals court of Rome where he has been living since 1973. He is also a journalist, essayist, screenwriter and dramaturge.

Giancarlo de Cataldo was born in 1956.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Genre Fiction > Anthologies
2Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > General
3Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > Mystery > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Crimini: The Bitter Lemon Book of Italian Crime Fiction?

Dynamite collection of Italian crime stories  Sep 6, 2008
"Crimini" is a highly intelligent, dark and often very funny collection of short stories by some of Italy's very best crime writers. If you haven't read any of the increasingly available Italian mysteries now in translation and on the American market, this book would be a great introduction to this wealth of clever writing and amazing talent.
The opening story in this collection is "You Are My Treasure Chest" by Niccolo Ammaniti and Antonio Manzini, which revolves around a drug-crazed cosmetic surgeon's attempt to recoop a valuable stash of cocaine from a creative hiding place. This story is totally of the wall and wildly hilarious while ultimately tragic for most of its principal characters.
The great writer, Andrea Camilleri, well-known and beloved for his Sicilian crime series, has contributed "A Series of Misunderstandings" to the book. This is a dark and clever tragedy that will make you want to read more from the author.
"The Boy Who Was Kidnapped by the Christmas Fairy (A Noir Fairytale)" is another grand romp that delivers a a cast of funny losers that you can't help rooting for and provides a delicious ending, that askews the more familiar cynicism of Italian writing. This story alone is worth the price of the book.
There is plenty more great reading in this collection. A lot of fun!
nothing bitter about it...  Aug 31, 2008
this collection of short stories combines the best of Italian crime fiction with the real sense of place that Italian literature can convey. While enjoying the vagaries of criminal minds, you'll feel you're sitting in the trattoria down the street.
Best of the best Italian crime fiction short stories  Aug 24, 2008
You'll get your money's worth with this book, which traveled with me and was a welcome companion during airline delays. One of Andrea Camilleri's stories is included, and his Inspector Montalbano mysteries are some of my favorite crime novels. But each of these short stories has its own charm, and if you enjoy the crime fiction genre, this book should entertain you quite well.
Excellent Introduction to Modern Italian Crime Fiction  May 5, 2008
Italian crime fiction has been gaining a higher profile in the English-reading world in the last five years, and this anthology (originally published in Italy in 2005) showcases all the big names (except Giancarlo Carofiglio), plus a few who've yet to previously appear in English. In his introduction, editor and contributor Giancarlo De Cataldo identifies three themes that unite the nine stories: corruption (financial and moral), foreigners (recent waves of immigrants), and obsession with success and fame. The first of these is rather obvious -- pretty much all crime fiction involves moral corruption. The second theme is rather more interesting and distinctive, although the stories here tend to incorporate immigrants from elsewhere in Europe, and not the African or Middle Eastern immigrant population. The third theme is also somewhat unusual, as these stories feature more entertainers, politicians, and glory-seekers than the average crime anthology.

The first story, Niccolo Ammaniti (known outside Italy primarily for the novel I'm Not Scared and its film adaptation) and Antonio Manzini's "You Are My Treasure Chest," is a good example. It features a coke-addled, panic-striken plastic surgeon to the stars who, in the midst of a boob job, hides his baggie of cocaine inside the starlet he's operating on. This outsized premise is the catalyst for several years of misadventures in which he attempts to retrieve this "nest egg." It's kind of a goofy, ridiculous story, but colorful enough to engage readers open to that kind of crime story. Sandrone Dazieri's "The Last Gag" and Giorgio Faletti's "The Guest of Honor" also revolve around the lifestyles of the rich and famous. In the former, a former TV comedian comes to realize his former partner was murdered, and inadvertently solves the case. The latter features a tabloid journalist who thinks he's hit paydirt by locating a long-missing TV star -- however following this story also means tangling with the devil...

Most of the other stories are more conventional, such as the second, Carlo Lucarelli's (whose post-WWII De Luca Trilogy is well worth seeking out) "The Third Shot." The only story to feature a female lead, it revolves around a policewoman who suspects a well-known fellow officer of lying about an armed confrontation with two Albanian thieves, and the fallout her suspicion engenders. Another cop-centric story is Massimo Carlotto's "Death of an Informer," which pits a tenacious cop against a ring of Croat soldiers turned drug smugglers. Probably the most old-fashioned story is Marcello Fois' brief "What's Missing," in which a nice old lady is killed and a police detective must sift through a few clues to identify the killer and his motive.

The other three stories are somewhat more personal. The title of Andrea Camilleri's (author of the long-running Inspector Montalbano series) "A Series of Misunderstandings" is perfectly apt, as an unlikely couple falls in love and when she is killed, he must struggle to clear his name and find her true killers. In Deigo De Silva's "Theresa's Lair," an aging beauty is held captive by a young anticapitalist activist on the run from the cops, with tragic results. And Giancarlo De Cataldo's "The Boy Who Was Kidnapped by the Christmas Fairy" is about a desperate and amoral man who stags the kidnapping of his girlfriend's son in order to use the ransom money to pay off his gambling debts. However, the involvement of a hooker and a Lithuanian drifter complicate matters in what ends up becoming a rather heartwarming tale.

The anthology is more successful than most due to the range of stories, as well as their relative length. The mix of comical, cop, and citizen stories makes for nice changes of pace within the book, and with one exception, the stories are 25-40 pages long, allowing for plenty of room for character and plot development. This is both a great introduction to modern Italian crime fiction, and a solid crime anthology in its own right.

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