Spurred on by the BBC films, I just had to read the books. This set of ten books is ideal. Having checked on the publishing dates, I was very much able to read them in chronological order. Nothing stands still, people marry, babies are born and characters reappear. Commissario Montelbano ages, but remains the same character; upsetting his superiors, refusing promotion, avoiding telephone calls, eating or rather devouring food and fighting with Livia....Oh yes, and solving crimes
Montelbano's detective technique reminds me of Dirk Gently, the Holistic Detective of Douglas Adams. Seeming completely unrelated events appear to create the warp and the weft of Camilleri's stories.
As always, there is so much more happening in the books than in the films. I found it difficult not to read a whole book at one sitting and eventually rationed myself to half a book a day. This is amazing for me, as I have not managed to get through a whole book over the last seven years. I will, however be re-reading the whole series again.
This series of books is light entertainment and not a mind bending exercise. I apologise if you consider that my calling Murder etc as light entertainment offensive, but I have to ask why you would read detective fiction if you did not expect a corpse or two. Agatha Christie filled her books with murder after murder, Shakespeare managed to fill his stages with dead bodies. Inspector Montelbano is really quite satisfied with one murder at a time.
You cannot escape the foul language, but I do suspect that it has been toned down by the translator from the original Sicilian oaths.
Perhaps not the most most encouraging reason for reading these books, but I was recommended to read them by my counsellor when I was getting out of a depression. Now, I have met a new friend who speaks Italian and next week, I am going to Italy for a holiday. Perhaps I really have been affected by Andrea Camilleri's books.