The Patience of the Spider and over 2 million other books are available for Amazon Kindle . Learn more

Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

Start reading The Patience of the Spider on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

The Patience of the Spider (Montalbano 8) [Unabridged] [Hardcover]

Andrea Camilleri
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)

Available from these sellers.


Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition 3.59  
Hardcover, Unabridged --  
Paperback, Unabridged 5.59  
Audio, CD, Audiobook 16.06  

Book Description

4 Jan 2008 Montalbano 8

'A brother,' he said.

Jesus Christ! Now where’d this brother come from? Whose brother? Montalbano had known from the start that between all the brothers, uncles, in-laws, nephews and nieces, this case was going to drive him crazy.

Chief Inspector Montalbano is on enforced sick leave. He is being vigorously looked after by his spirited girlfriend Livia, which unfortunately means his housekeeper – an excellent cook – has retreated in a fit of pique.

Then when a local girl goes mysteriously missing, the whole community takes an interest in the case. But why are the kidnappers so sure that the girl’s impoverished father and dying mother will be able to find a fortune? The ever-inquisitive Montalbano steps in, to get to the heart of the matter in his own inimitable style.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Picador; 1st Edition edition (4 Jan 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330442236
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330442237
  • Product Dimensions: 21.8 x 14 x 3.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 583,361 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Andrea Camilleri is one of Italy's most famous contemporary writers. His Montalbano series has been adapted for Italian television and translated into nine languages. He lives in Rome. Stephen Sartarelli is an award-winning translator. He is also the author of three books of poetry, most recently The Open Vault. He lives in France.

Product Description


'...You dive into his world and you live there, tasting, sweating, smelling sea and roses until the book ends.'
-- The Scotsman

'Andrea Camilleri's novels set in Sicily, are among the most exquisitely crafted pieces of crime writing available today.' -- Sunday Times

'As ever with this series, the sharply drawn characters combine with an ingenious plot'
-- Good Book Guide

'Camilleri is a witty, intelligent writer who knows how to draw in a reader and keep them wanting more.' --

'Montalbano is on fine bolshy form...But he is just one fully realised character among dozens: cops, suspects, and all.' -- Daily Telegraph

'Stave off the winter chill by venturing temporarily to sicily with the lastest Andrea Camilleri mystery'
-- Time Out

'The Patience of the Spider; a plot based around the mysterious kidnapping of a student is simply superb.' -- Sunday Times


'Short, neat and (obviously) beautifully written.' --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse and search another edition of this book.
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Andrea Camilleri - The Patience of the Spider 3 Mar 2008
By RachelWalker TOP 500 REVIEWER
The Patience of the Spider opens as Inspector Salvo Montalbano is recovering from injuries sustained in his previous adventure, the brilliant Rounding the Mark. Indeed, this novel opens a matter of hours afterwards as Salvo, recuperates under the ministrations of his partner Livia and undergoes flashbacks to time in hospital. That is all cut abruptly short, though, when a local girl is kidnapped and Salvo is called on to the case, though only on the sidelines, not as the investigator in charge. The kidnapping is a real puzzle: it's well-known that the girl's family cannot possibly pay the ransom, and the behaviour of the kidnappers makes little sense to Montalbano. However, with a bit of dogged investigation and after a few revealing discoveries, he eventually gets to the truth...

The Patience of the Spider is not the best Montalbano by quite a long shot. However, that is saying little, as it's still a hugely entertaining, amusing read. Montalbano himself is on fine crotchety, manipulative, intuitively brilliant form. The writing is as funny and lightly sarcastic as ever also. However, the plot here has a lot less meat on its bones than previous outings. Indeed, there's little more to the book than then simple synopsis presented above. It's direct and focused, but it feels thin and underdeveloped. And not only that, but it's quite obvious what's going on from about halfway through the book, and the reader is rather surprised that Montalbano doesn't cotton on to what's going on immediately. It's enjoyable, yes, but would be served well by bring a bit more complex.

That said, however, it says a lot about the qualities of Camilleri's hugely enjoyable writing style (it's full of sly fun and reads immensely quickly - possibly thanks to the simplicity of the plot!
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Tiny Puzzles Bother Montalbano as He Recuperates 23 Aug 2007
Inspector Montalbano was wounded in Rounding the Mark, and The Patience of the Spider begins with Montalbano being on leave to recuperate. Livia has even returned to his side to take care of his, banishing the ministrations of his housekeeper and marvelous cook, Adelina Cirrincio. Montalbano is concerned that the doctors will find out that he has a heart condition, but that doesn't happen. Except for occasional love-making (which Livia isn't anxious for), Montalbano is leading a circumscribed life . . . even eating healthy, low-calorie foods. Bah!

Naturally, it is a relief when Montalbano is called temporarily back to duty as a kidnapping overwhelms the local force. But the case is not to be his; a colleague comes from a place where kidnappings are common events.

The kidnapped woman, Susanna Mistretta, is a pretty young university student . . . and her family doesn't have any money. Everyone fears the worst, that this is a sexual crime rather than extortion. And initially, there's no news from the kidnappers.

That set of circumstances seems strange to Montalbano. As he investigates, more little things bother him. Why is her motorbike facing in the wrong direction? Where is her helmet? As time passes, the little things seem to suggest of shadow of something else. What could it be?

But it's annoying to work on the case, because Livia alternately berates him for not doing enough . . . and for not telling her about every little development.

Will the young woman be saved? Will she get back in time to say good-bye to her dying mother? Your heart will be wrung as you consider those elements.

The story lacks the usual Montalbano zest for several reasons.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great plot 22 Dec 2011
By Concise
A thoroughly enjoyable and engrossing read, which is what one expects every time from Mr Camilleri. Plots are always well structured and Inspector Salvo Montalbano is a thoroughly flawed but likeable character, who somehow always comes to the right decision and gets his murderer. He sulks, he doubts, he uses people, he does not suffer fools gladly, is a total foodie, Italian food of course, and he makes me laugh out loud. Great stuff.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Patchy but Satisfying 24 April 2008
By Mrs. K. A. Wheatley TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
I love the Montalbano series and have read most of them. I was really eager to start this one, and it starts well. Montalbano is recovering from an injury sustained in the line of duty which also causes him to worry about his mortality and question his abilities as a cop. He is called in to assist on the sidelines with a complex kidnap case involving a young and beautiful girl and senses that all is not as it should be.

The things that were great about this book were the setting, the sights and sounds of Sicily; The fact that we get to know more about Montalbano's complicated relationship with his girlfriend Livia and of course Montalbano himself. The thing that let it down was the case, which I had guessed the outcome for fairly early on. I'm not saying I'm a mastermind or anything, I just thing that if you're used to the way things play out in the Montalbano novels this one might not be quite up to par for you.

Having said that it's still a great read and well worth having.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Captivating 31 Dec 2008
By Jon Chambers VINE VOICE
The Patience of the Spider is about kidnapping. But it isn't just a female university student who is held captive. So are we, the readers.

For the most part, the novel follows the well-tried formula: Livia's unpredictability (matching Montalbano's); Catarella's imbecility; the Police Authority's antipathy towards their heroic Inspector; and finally, of course, the Inspector's preternatural sleuthing (in this novel, he knows in advance when people are on the point of death, for instance).

In other ways, however, this one is different. The opening is more leisurely - it isn't until Chapter 2 that we get to know about the main focus of the investigation. But this is a plus, because in Chapter 1 we are entertained by Salvo's razor-sharp wit. This book isn't as busy as others in the series, but remains fast-paced and engaging. (And anyway, much of the drama takes place inside the Inspector's head, as he thinks and questions aloud. For many, a more rewarding kind of 'action' than that of the Hollywood car-crash variety.)

Montalbano 8 has wonderful pace, sparkling dialogue and thoughtful, occasionally poetic, prose. Earlier reviewers may well be right about this one being easier to crack than others in the series. But any really good book is surely about more than just a plot or a mystery. Here we also have a teasing and profound dilemma: what should take precedence, state law or individual moral conscience? Not that easy to decide when you happen to be a cop. Engrossing stuff.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Good story with unexpected twist in the end
Published 6 days ago by Marcus McCollum
4.0 out of 5 stars Salvo solves the mystery and rights a wrong.
One of the best constructed plots all embedded in the fantastic evocation of Sicilian life. Montalbano's single minded pursuit of the truth and good food race through the story.
Published 1 month ago by Jenny Hamilton
5.0 out of 5 stars More of the same....
Another excellent book in the Inspector Montalbano series, with a strong evocation of place, people and culture. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Richard Pinchin
4.0 out of 5 stars Tired Detective
I'm a Inspector Montalbano fan. I enjoyed the TV series very much and I have turned to the original books to get a better flavour of the man and place. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Alan Morris
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent
Amazon ask you to review every book so since I have read all this series and am lazy I repeat a previous review. Read more
Published 3 months ago by meryon
5.0 out of 5 stars Love the books
I love the Montalbano series. I read all the ones in the local library and finally decided to buy a Kindle so I could read the rest in the series. Read more
Published 4 months ago by kevin heath
4.0 out of 5 stars the worries of age and being shot
Another twisting tale with more mid-life worry tackled with a sense of having to find the end of the piece of string to find the ephemeral peace…along with more food. Read more
Published 6 months ago by stanman surrey
4.0 out of 5 stars The Patience of the Spider
A good light read for the lover of light detective genre . It is typical of the Inspector Montalbano series as much of the background is used to create a pleasant atmospheric... Read more
Published 6 months ago by maverick
5.0 out of 5 stars Old Rocker
Love all these books and have got my family and friends hooked on them too. I know this is good as I have read it before and am hoping the recipient has not as its a Christmas... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Old Rocker
5.0 out of 5 stars The Patience of the Spider
I love all of the Inspector Montalbano books and would recommend any of the books in this series by Andrea Camilleri, which are excellently translated from the Italian into... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Mr S A Crawford
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Look for similar items by category