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Wilful Behaviour: (Brunetti 11)

Wilful Behaviour: (Brunetti 11) [Kindle Edition]

Donna Leon
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)

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Product Description


"A classic example of detective-book murder, it is satisfyingly difficult to resolve ... Leon whips up a brilliant narrative storm" (Sunday Times)

"Compelling ... absorbingly detailed ... this is a powerful story, brilliantly evoking Venetian atmosphere, and the characters of Brunetti and his family continue to deepen throughout this series" (The Times)

"Donna Leon's novels have become successively more subtle, more complex and perhaps more serious, without ever losing their compelling power as narratives. This is especially true of Wilful Behaviour; the story is wholly engrossing" (Evening Standard)

Book Description

The eleventh novel in Donna Leon's award-winning Brunetti crime series draws the Venetian Commissario into a mystery involving dark secrets dating back to the Second World War.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 437 KB
  • Print Length: 370 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0099536625
  • Publisher: Cornerstone Digital (13 April 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099536625
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099536628
  • ASIN: B003ELY7EM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #16,719 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Donna Leon has lived in Venice for many years and previously lived in Switzerland, Saudi Arabia, Iran and China, where she worked as a teacher. Her previous novels featuring Commissario Brunetti have all been highly acclaimed; including Friends in High Places, which won the CWA Macallan Silver Dagger for Fiction, Through A Glass, Darkly, Suffer the Little Children, The Girl of His Dreams, and most recently, About Face.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
By Nicholas Casley TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
"She was eating an apple. The knife was on the table."

Thus confesses the murderer in this eleventh instalment of the Commissario Brunetti series. I am glad to report it is a return to form following the disappointment of the tenth, `A Sea of Troubles'.

This time we stay in the city itself and explore the question of honour. Honour is uppermost in Paola's mind as she teaches her students the works of Henry James and Edith Wharton, but they are also uppermost in Brunetti as events that took place in the city during the Second World War intrude into a seemingly motiveless murder of one of Paola's students at the university. Venice at all times has had its secrets, but those of the war seem to be the hardest to unravel, perhaps because their horrors were too great.

Donna Leon maintains her usual eye for irony and for the age. She notes how, "The Madonna had once saved the city from plague, and now there was a church. The Americans had saved the country from the Germans, and now there was a McDonald's." Her talent for exposing the seamier side of the city, for the things that the Venetians would rather the tourists did not see or hear about, remains untarnished. For of Brunetti's friend Marco, who complains of having to pay bribes to the city's planning office, "so much of what would be sold in his shop as `original Venetian handicrafts' was made in third world countries where the closest the workers ever came to a canal was the one behind their houses that served as a sewer."

I'm not sure that the contrived denouement fulfilled my expectations, but that goes, I guess, with the genre in which she writes. But perhaps my own frustration with her endings derives more from the frustrations of the Italian legal system rather than from her own imagination.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top-Notch Novel in This Excellent Series 6 Feb 2008
Format:Audio Cassette
To me, the best mysteries can be viewed more as novels than as puzzles to be solved. Donna Leon successfully crosses into this high ground of mystery writing with Wilful Behaviour.

In fact, such a successful novel can be read independently of the other books in a series. Wilful Behaviour also meets that test.

Do you like a book with memorable characters? Wilful Behaviour delivers both with characters that you meet in the novel and those who are described by other characters.

Do you like an intricate plot where all the pieces fit together in multiple dimensions? Wilful Behaviour once again is a good book in terms of this quality.

Do you like novels that reflect other novels, rewarding the well-read? Donna Leon delivers here as well.

Although I have always liked this series, Wilful Behaviour breaks out above the clouds in terms of being much better than the earlier offerings in the series.

In the story, Professoressa Paola Brunetti is approached by one of her better students, Claudia Leonardo, about a legal question that the student hopes Professor Brunetti's husband, Commissario Guido Brunetti, can answer. Guido resists providing any information without receiving more details. He meets Claudia and finds that her question relates back to the difficult days of World War II while Italy was part of the Axis powers. Not knowing much about those days, Guido begins to exercise his curiosity and learns about many hidden crimes from those days.

All of this becomes not so academic after Claudia is murdered, and many new questions are presented. In the process of investigating Claudia's murder, Brunetti learns about new levels of deception and depravity that some employ to achieve their selfish ends.

I have read a number of novels that relate to those days in World War II in Italy, and I found this one to be one of the very best.

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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Leon returns with a welcomed "number 11"! 11 May 2002
By Billy J. Hobbs VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
For the legions of Donna Leon fans, her latest, "Wilful Behavior," could not come fast enough! And, as in the previous 10 spellbinders, Leon maintains her reputation as being one of the best in "police procedural" mytery business--and long may she wave!
Leon’s inimitable Commisario Guido Brunetti is true to form--and readers know exactly what this is: knight in shining armor in a city that seems to run endlessly in corruption, murder, intrigue. Venice is the setting for Leon’s books--a city that she knows well but never tries to deny its seamier sides.
A young student of Brunetti’s wife Paula comes to her asking for an opinion to a touchy legal situation, going all the way back to the days of resistance, retribution, and collusion of World War II (when the Italians certainly sent many mixed messages!). The young girl wishes to know if someone convicted can now be honorably pardoned. She provides scant information about the circumstances.
Alas, soon she is found murdered, and Leon’s talents move to the front. Brunetti begins the investigation and before he can label the case "solved," he must journey into areas "best left alone," if his critics have their say. The labrynthine situation involves a grand collection of art having been acquired under unscrupulous circumstances as Italy was falling to its knees in the whole War picture. Definite--and mostly negative--feelings were formed during this time, as Italian often pitted himself against Italian as political, economic, religious, and social issues quickly became life and death matters.
It takes all Brunetti’s skills as he uncovers anti-Jewish collaboration and abuse during the wartime, resulting in, now, at least two deaths.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
This series is a great read for lovers of Venice and crime novels. Very good grammer and style.
Published 7 days ago by N. Mulholland
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent read, ordering more Donna Leon novels.
Published 22 days ago by Judith Nesbit
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
all a bit he same
Published 23 days ago by HK
5.0 out of 5 stars donna leon does not miss a single trick molto bene
donna leon does not miss a single trick molto bene
Published 1 month ago by roy a rose
5.0 out of 5 stars wilful behaviout
Donna Leon gives us a good mix here although the identity of the murderer is a little far fetched. Despite that I have given it 5 stars because she has painted Italy's war legacy... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Kindle Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars More death in Venice
Another absorbing tale from this wonderful author. A young student of the wife of Commisario Brunetti is murdered in Venice soon after asking him for help. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars First Brunetti but hopefully not the last.
Normally I'm not a fan of the detective novel, but I do visit Venice often to paint. I was hooked on Brunetti, being the opposite of so many cop scripts and books. Read more
Published 4 months ago by PETE L
5.0 out of 5 stars Never fails to deliver
Always a gripping read. It's a book you cannot put down. Characters are so believable and Venice comes alive Excellent
Published 4 months ago by paul caine
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the best...
I have read most of the Brunetti books, not always in order as I don't consider it necessary with this series. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Key Reader:
5.0 out of 5 stars This is only my point of view......
Donna Leon Is the best crime writer I have read so far. ( and she does not have to use foul language to describe her points..)..
Published 8 months ago by Ralph W Pearson
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