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Aurelio Zen of Rome’s elite Criminalpol is back—but nobody’s supposed to know it. After months in the hospital healing from wounds sustained in a bomb attack on his car in Sicily, he is lying low under a false name at a beach resort on the Tuscan coast, waiting to testify in an imminent anti-Mafia trial. In the meantime, he has nothing to do but enjoy the orderly and undemanding world of a classic Italian beach holiday: spending his days in his assigned chair on a well-managed strip of pale sand, eating splendid seafood, and engaging in a mild flirtation with the attractive woman sitting under the next umbrella. Until he notices that an inordinate number of people—each of whom might have been mistaken for Zen himself—have been dropping dead around him. Now it seems to be just a matter of time before the Mafia manage to finish the job they bungled months before on a lonely Sicilian road.
But though Zen has been out of commission for months, he hasn’t lost any of his highly developed, legendary abilities to navigate treacherous waters. When he finds himself suddenly back in action, he begins to feel more alive than he has since the moments before he was almost dead, which might help keep him from being almost dead—or worse—yet again.
In And Then You Die, Michael Dibdin has given us a suspenseful, sharply funny new chapter in the always unexpected and uncommonly entertaining saga of Aurelio Zen.
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“There is an initial flurry of deaths among innocent people, in true Agatha Christie style, some Elmore Leonardish humour, a gadget straight out of James Bond, and a romantic subplot. . . . Zen himself is as intriguing as ever.”
“Dibdin is a highly sophisticated writer who has chosen to stay largely within the crime genre. He brings off its required effects superbly, being especially a master of understated menace and unforeseen plunges into horror.”
“Dibdin has created an interesting alternative to the fast-paced, smart-assed, hard-boiled detective genre. His version is full of hidden half-truths, twisted, smiling, power-hungry authorities, and enough smoke and mirrors to keep you guessing—a modern take on the medieval mystery.”
—The Irish Times
“Dibdin’s Zen novels effortlessly paint a sharper portrait of Italy than any guidebook, cookbook or academic history. . . . And Then You Die is more meditative than the other Zen thrillers, beautifully crafted and evocative, with the perfect balance of plot and rueful digression.”
“Dibdin knows Italy from the south of Sicily to the Swiss border. . . . Those who are familiar with things Italian will revel in his accounts and analyses, while those who are not can savour the bubbles and colours which are as inebriating as freshly uncorked Prosecco.”
—Times Literary Supplement
Michael Dibdin is the author of fourteen previous novels, including Dead Lagoon, Così Fan Tutti, A Long Finish, and Blood Rain. A native of England, he now lives in Seattle, Washington.
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Book Description Condition: New. new. Seller Inventory # AP-431
Book Description Pantheon, 2002. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0385659202