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Book Review | The Road to Murder by Camilla Tinchieri

From the publisher: In the latest installment of the acclaimed Tuscan Mystery series, the sole witness at a crime scene speaks only English, and ex-NYPD detective turned amateur chef Nico Doyle is summoned by the local carabinieri to help.

I’m always looking for good books set in Italy, and I’ve found an enjoyable series in the Tuscan Mysteries by Camilla Trinchieri. I have an Italian friend who tells me I need to read books by actual Italians, and I think Trinchieri fits the bill. Her father was an Italian diplomat and her mother an American, and she has lived in Italy and the United States.

The Road to Murder is due out in March and is the fourth book in the series. I’ve also read the first three books. I think that each book has gotten stronger, as is often the case with long-running series. The main character, Nico Doyle, is a widower who moved to his dead wife’s hometown. He’s also an ex-detective from New York. When a murder occurs in book 1, the local maresciallo asks for his help, since they don’t have many murders in idyllic Tuscany and Nico has a lot of experience. This pattern continues in each of the books. (Nico is evidently not good luck, since murders occur with regularity now that he’s a local!)

I love the Italian setting, the Italian words, the descriptions of the Italian landscapes and the Italian food. As I’ve gotten to know each recurring character, I like them better. There is one character who quotes a lot of Dante and a cute little rescue dog who’ll be a lot of fun if this ever becomes a TV series. I do find it a little odd that an American civilian is allowed to participate so fully in solving murders in an Italian city; maybe, at some point, he’ll actually get a job on the force.

This series is a fun cozy police procedural. If you enjoy Louise Penny’s Chief Inspector Gamache series, you might like it. I read an advance reader copy of The Road to Murder. When it is published in March, the Galesburg Public Library will add it to our print and ebook collections of the series. If you want to start the series, book 1 is Murder in Chianti.