First Sentence: To judge from the entrance the dawn was making, it promised to be a very iffy day'that is, blasts of angry sunlight one minute, fits of freezing rain the next, all of it seasoned with sudden gusts of wind'one of those days when someone who is sensitive to abrupt shifts in weather and suffers them in his blood and brain is likely to change opinion and direction continuously, like those sheets of tin, cut in the shape of banners and rooster, that spin every which way on rooftops with each new puff of wind.
I appreciate a good analogy and so enjoyed the opening paragraph of this book. Camilleri creates a very strong sense of place with his evocative descriptions.
The author has also created a strong, interesting character in Montalbano. He is a study in contrasts; calm facing a Mafia chief in a tense situation, yet goes into panic before the press; he can be quite crass, yet also very sensitive 'That morning, by surprising the two kids making love, he had desecrated life; and now, by exposing the two bodies that should have remained forever unknown to the world in their embrace, he had desecrated death.' He has a morbid fear of being promoted and suffers from mild synesthesia which converts smells into colors for him.
There is very good dialogue, including amusing non-sequesters, which adds realism to the story as well as retaining a sense of Italy.
The plot is intriguing and clever as it is one thread which leads to another, but it is the character of Montalbano who really kept me reading.
'The Terra-Cotta Dog' was a very enjoyable read and Camilleri and wonderful addition to my list of authors whose books are set in Italy.
THE TERRA-COTTA DOG (Pol Proc-Insp. Salvo Montalbano-Sicily-Contemp) ' G+
Camilleri, Andrea ' 2nd in series