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The Monster of Florence Paperback – Jun 25 2009

4.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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The Monster of Florence
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; Reprint edition (June 25 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446581275
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446581271
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 2.5 x 20.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 408 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #357,792 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

In an interview on the final disc, Preston describes his and Spezi's journalistic search for the still-at-large infamous serial killer of the title as the dark side of Under the Tuscan Sun. It's that and more: a chilling personal account of their investigation and how the authors incurred the wrath of bungling members of the Italian judiciary and were themselves accused of the crimes. Told from Preston's point of view, Dennis Boutsikaris's crisp, intelligent vocal rendition reflects the various stages of the author's life in Italy: his delight in arriving with wife and young son at a lovely villa in Florence, his surprise in hearing that a grisly double murder was committed in the villa's olive grove, his fascination with Spezi's stories of The Monster, and eventually his astonishment, frustration, anger and fear upon discovering that he and Spezi are suspects in the murders. Boutsikaris is particularly effective in giving voice to the author's rueful and yet wistful final thoughts. A Grand Central hardcover (Reviews, Apr. 7). (June)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"Remarkable true-crime story...passionately describes the investigations gone wrong....Preston knows how to load his storytelling with intriguing evidence and damning details. His feverish style keeps the reader turning with the hope of uncovering the killer's identity."—USA TODAY

"Preston's account of the crimes is lucid and mesmerizing."—TIME Magazine

"Suspenseful...reveals much about the dogged writing team as well as the motives of the killers....this bit of real-life Florence bloodletting makes you sweat and think, and presses relentlessly on the nerves."—PUBLISHERS WEEKLY (starred review)

"As taut and tense as any of the author's bestselling thrillers...fascinating, stomach-churning...nerve-tingling action and vivid writing...The Monster of Florence is a gripping tale, filled with shocking crimes, boldly drawn characters, and the careening suspense of the ultimate whodunit."—DALLAS MORNING NEWS

"The co-authors expertly and entertainingly guide the reader though an epic, colorful cast of characters and the stranger-than-fiction machinations of a Byzantine Italian judicial system."—Washington Post

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By Jill Meyer HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on May 2 2010
Format: Hardcover
...be either the victim or perpetrator a crime in Italy, particularly in Tuscany.

I'll leave others to judge the writing of the book. I thought it was good, not great. What I WAS left with was the notion of the complete insanity of the Italian police and judicial systems.

Preston moved to Tuscany in the early 00's with his family to write and enjoy living abroad. Under the Tuscan Sun, and all that. While there, he learned about a series of killings that took place in and around Florence. They were all double homicides of couples parked in Lovers' Lanes in the hills near the city. One killing a year, usually during the summer months, beginning in the late 1960's and ending in the mid-1980's.

Preston and a newspaper reporter friend, Mario, teamed up to write a book about the killings. These murders had been investigated by various branches of the Florence police and the Italian government police and a whole bunch of suspects, ranging from village idiots to Sardinian bandits to physicians and pharmacists had been arrested and tried over the years for these murders. Most of those who were brought to trial were victims themselves, victims of the ineptness of the police system and feuds between branches of the Italian judicial system.

If lives hadn't been lost and ruined in the years since the murders began, the book would read as an amusing farce, reminiscent of an Inspector Clouseau movie.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is definatley not my typical genre but I saw it on a 'Best Summer Reads' table and decided to give it a try. Wow . . . what a in-depth look into a famous Italian murder trial, and all the drama surrounding it, not to mention the Italian justice system itself. I echo another reviewers sentiment "never get arrested in Tuscany". Amen to that. Writing itself was pretty good, but it's the story itself that drives this particular book. I found myself constantly googling the characters just to satisfy myself that they did/do, in fact, exsist. A must read for summer, especially if you like crime novels, and even if you don't (I didn't think I did either). Creepy to think this crime is still unsolved, especially after all this effort into the case.
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Format: Paperback
A well-written non-fiction thriller! I couldn't put this book down, but not only that - it intrigued me so much that I was constantly researching it on the internet to see all the other accounts of the murders. There is an episode of NBC dateline that covers a lot of the material, and also apparently Tom Cruise bought the movie rights to it and is producing a hollywood film about it due out next year!
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