In Una lama di luce we left Montalbano and Livia stunned by the death of François, the central character in Il Ladro di merendine, the little boy that Livia had wanted to adopt. Livia is still in Boccadasse and pours out her sorrows in long phone conversations with Salvo. Then one gloomy morning a call from Fazio interrupts Montalbano’s nightmare and draws him into a new investigation. It has been raining hard in Vigàta for several days. The storms have caused floods that have swamped houses and land, creating a sea of mud. A man called Giugiù Nicotra has been found dead on a building site. He is half naked and has been shot in the back. He had fled into a kind of tunnel formed by some large pipes meant for the water mains. The investigation gets off to a slow start, but all the evidence points to the world of building sites and public contracts. A world just as slimy and impenetrable as the mud on the building sites. As he wades through this muddy world in which builders, construction firms and public officials thrive, Montalbano is obsessed by one thought: that by going to die in the tunnel Nicotra had been trying to communicate something.
He made his debut as a theater director, in Rome, in 1953.
He subsequently worked as a producer and scriptwriter and as a director for RAI radio and television. He also taught Actor Directing at the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia, and theatre directing at the Accademia Nazionale d’Arte Drammatica Silvio d’Amico for fifteen years.
He published his first novel in 1978 and has never stopped writing since. He has published more more than 90 volumes: historical novels, political essays, and crime novels, including the celebrated Commissario Montalbano series. His books have sold almost 25 million copies in Italy and 15 million copies abroad, and have been translated into into 33 languages.
The Commissario Montalbano tv series has been broadcasted in more than 60 countries.
He writes for many Italian and foreign newspapers and has won numerous literary awards in Italy and elsewhere in Europe.