I know I shouldn't , but I do tend to judge a book by it's cover. The cover of this book is quite appealing as are the quotes listed on it such as "Magnificent", "Devastating" and "Excellent" ,culled from reviews in respected journals. After reading "The Collini Case" the only words that I would like to have added to those on its cover are "Unexceptional" and "Short". The book is written in a very dull, emotionless, matter of fact style by the German author and the reader never gets to really know or empathise with any of the characters in the novel. The book tells the tale of a young Berlin defence lawyer who takes up a case involving an Italian man who murdered an octagenarian German industrialist in cold blood in a hotel before handing himself over to the police. The killer didnt give a reason for committing the crime.It seems an impossible case to defend and things are made worse by the fact that the lawyer knew the victim of the crime particularly well. Is it possible at all to defend such a murderer ? Will we ever find out why he committed such a ghastly crime ? This book is far too short and a longer story would have been more satisfying and apposite. Also this book would have been a better read if the author had actually seemed interested when he was writing the narrative as his writing style is very flat and unexciting. The climax of the book was more of an anti climax than anything and didnt move me at all.