Title: Equal Danger
Publisher: Harper & Row
Publication Date: 1973
Edition: 1st Edition.
New York. 1973. Harper & Row. 1st American Edition. Very Good In Dustjacket With A Few Tape Marks On The Back. Translated from the Italian by Adrienne Foulke. 119 pages. July 1973. hardcover. Jacket design by Geoffrey Moss. 0060138092. keywords: Literature Translated Sicily. inventory # 6481. FROM THE PUBLISHER - The first man to die was District Attorney Varga, who was conducting the prosecution in the Reis trial. He died with a sprig of jasmine clasped in his hand. The next man to die was a judge named Sanza, shot through the heart, in Ales, a town about sixty miles away from where Varga had been killed. The Minister for National Security had assigned Inspector Rogas to investigate the murders. Rogas was an exceptional investigator - his head worked well, and his head told him there would be a third murder, and that it would be the murder that would provide the clue he'd need to solve them all. He was at least partially right—the highest ranking magistrate in the town of Chiro. Judge Azar, was the next victim. This is a novel that explores many things, including the codes of justice and the power that taints and destroys courts and governments. It is a complex, ironic novel, and a most important one. KIRKUS REVIEWS says of EQUAL DANGER, ‘On the treacherously simple surface here, glinting like isinglass, this is a criminal conundrum in which, serial fashion, a number of Sicilian judges are assassinated - the case becoming the province of Inspector Rogas, a remarkable man who quotes Chesterton and La Bruyere while brooding that he alone has `principles in a country where almost no one did.'. There is a symbolism m the shadow play which also suggests - as does Sciascia's artfully commonplace style – Durrenmatt or of course Kafka. With footfalls of conjecture on every dusty street. At the close Sciascia, one of the finest (less well known here) Italian writers, makes clear that his little ‘fable' had been written as a pastime which amused him - and ceased to do so. For interred with Rogas are his concepts of justice - and duty and honor which cannot survive in a country where omerta, that conspiracy of silence, becomes a condition of the soul as well as a matter-of-fact proviso of existence.' Very Good In Dustjacket With A Few Tape Marks On The Back. Bookseller Inventory # 6481
Synopsis: Developed under Sciascia's hand in the spirit of a parody, Equal Danger has come to be regarded as a wide-ranging political thriller, one of the masterpieces in the genre. District Attorney Varga is shot dead while picking a sprig of jasmine. Then Judge Sanza is killed. Then Judge Azar. Is this string of murders an individual vendetta or a more sinister plot? The charming detective inspector Rogas works his way into the mind of his prime suspect, Cres. The pursuit of truth and justice are Rogas's vocation, but his work is frustrated by a system which defies his understanding. The book, written in 1971, uncannily prefigures the Red Brigade's subsequent killing of magistrates and the Catholic-Communist pact of the late 1970s in Italy.
About the Author: Leonardo Sciascia was born in Sicily in 1912 and died there in 1989. Like Joseph Roth, Sciascia worked with deceptively simple forms - books about crime, historical novels, political thrillers - and was a master of lucid and accessible prose. This polished surface conceals great depths of sophistication and an intense engagement with the moral and historical problems of modern Italy, especially of his native Sicily. His books are rooted in a particular culture; they speak to anyone who has ever wondered how people can endure unbearable injustice. Equal Danger was made into the film Illustrious Corpses by Francesco Rosi.
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