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Friday, June 17, 2011

Recently read: "The Dogs of Rome" by Conor Fitzgerald

The Dogs of Rome

The first novel by Fitzgerald, and the first of what is meant to be a series about police chief commissioner Alec Blume, an American expatriate living in Rome.

Blume, a teenager when his art historians parents were murdered during a bank robbery, has grown up to be a loner, but also a sharp police officer.  When an animal rights activist, who's wife is also a prominent politician, is killed, Blume must deal with interference from his superiors as he zeros in on his suspect.  The victim had ties to the mob (his mistress being the daughter of the local mob chief) and was instrumental in in exposing a dog fighting ring.

I enjoyed the book, though it was hard to get a handle on Blume.  He's written as such an outsider, there seems to be no "hook" into his character.  I also had to try and understand the Roman police bureaucracy, which was unfamiliar to me, and the sense that casual corruption is an excepted thing (perhaps not that different from modern American police mysteries).

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