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The Age of Doubt

An Inspector Montalbano Mystery by Andrea Camilleri

The mystery in The Age of Doubt begins with the crew of a yacht finding a body in a dinghy
The mystery in The Age of Doubt begins with
the crew of a yacht finding a body in a dinghy
A chance encounter with a strange young woman who Inspector Montalbano meets on the way to work one morning prompts him to visit the harbour authorities at Vigàta.

A yacht called the Vanna that the young woman said belonged to her aunt was due to sail in that afternoon but at the harbour he discovers it has been held up out at sea because of stormy weather.

Later in the day, a lieutenant from the harbour office gets in touch with Montalbano to tell him that the people on board the Vanna have called ahead to report that they have encountered a dinghy floating in the sea carrying the dead body of a man.

The crew have taken the dead body, which has a badly disfigured face, on board the yacht and they bring it into the harbour with them. The harbour physician, who Montalbano knows and likes, asks him to come down to look at the body with him. Despite trying to argue that the victim may have died in international waters, Montalbano soon finds himself in charge of a murder investigation.

The Inspector becomes suspicious of the owner of the yacht, a bad tempered middle aged woman, who denies all knowledge of the supposed niece he had met that morning. However, he later realises he has been conned by the strange young woman.

Camilleri's The Age of Doubt is published by Pan Macmillan
Camilleri's The Age of Doubt is
published by Pan Macmillan 
Montalbano soon finds himself embroiled in a puzzling mystery and at one stage has to sit down and writes a letter to himself to help him understand the various aspects of the case.

Everything is made even more chaotic by Catarella’s inability to understand people on the phone, but Montalbano continues to show remarkable patience with him.

He also has to deal with the Commissioner over a problem with paperwork on his desk that got wet during the stormy weather

Despite his long standing relationship with his girlfriend, Livia, he finds himself becoming dangerously besotted with a beautiful young woman who works at the harbour and he has to risk his own life to help her when events reach their dramatic conclusion.

The Age of Doubt - the 14th in the highly popular series - is a hectic but highly readable Montalbano mystery, laced with plenty of humour, in which as usual Camilleri keeps a few surprises up his sleeve until the end. 

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