Private investigator Bacci Pagano can’t resist taking the bait when his new client dangles a check with too many zeros. He should have known that where there’s bait, there’s always a hook.
In a hospital corridor, private investigator Bacci Pagano is keeping watch over Jasmìne Kilamba. If she lives, her testimony will shatter a notorious human trafficking ring. Seemingly out of nowhere, he is approached by an elderly German named Kurt Hessen who is searching for his Italian half-brother. Despite his better judgment, Pagano accepts the job. So many things, good and evil, happened when the Nazis occupied Genoa in 1944, what did it matter now?
But it matters very much to someone and Pagano finds himself plunged into a world of old secrets and new lies in this wartime thriller where the bill for the sins of the past has come due . . . with interest.
A Riveting, Rewarding Read!
A tale of two halves: then and now, both gripping!
PI Bacci Pagano is seated in a hospital corridor, hoping that prostitute Jasmine will recover from her injuries to enable her to contribute to bringing a notorious human trafficking ring to justice. While he waits, he is approached by a German man who wishes to employ him to find his Italian half brother. Despite misgivings Pagano accepts the job, allowing us to discover all about how the second world war affected the area.
This is a beautifully told story, and the translation is so perfect that it’s hard to believe it wasn’t written in English in the first place. Absolutely riveting and it kept me enthralled to the very end. What a tale! I’m always drawn to novels about how ordinary people survived wartime and this one is both exciting and unpredictable. My heart wept for the characters but, at the same time, I was full of admiration for their courage and commitment. A very satisfying read, and one I’m happy to recommend. 4.5* stars from me, and a fervent hope that more of this series will find it’s way into translation.
My thanks to the publisher for my copy – it’s been an absolute pleasure to read this one; this is – as always – my honest, original and unbiased review.
Tags: historical thriller, WWII
- Format: ebook, paperback
- Size: 204 pages
- Publisher: Kazabo Publishing
- Publication Date: 17 February 2020
- Links: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/51824411
Bruno Morchio lives in Genoa, Italy, where he worked as a psychologist. He has written twelve novels and numerous short stories featuring the character of private investigator Bacci Pagano.
He has won two literary prizes for the mystery genre, the Azzeccagarbugli and the Lomellina in Giallo Prizes, and was a finalist for the Bancarella, the Scerbanenco and the Romiti Prizes.
With Un piede in due scarpe (A foot in two shoes, 2017), a mystery novel set in 1992, he ventured in the black comedy genre and earned the Special Mention of the jury of the Scerbanenco Prize. In 2019 he won the La Quercia del Myr di San Giacomo di Roburent Prize as Best Mystery Author of the Year.
The German Client (originally titled Rossoamaro) won the Azzeccagarbugli Prize for Best Mystery Novel in Italy. Published by Kazabo Publishing, this novel marks the first appearance in English of this best-selling Italian author.