05 May 2011

Book Review: Blood Sisters by Alessandro Perissinotto

Title: Blood Sisters
Author: Alessandro Perissinotto
Publisher: Hersilia Press
ISBN: 978-0-9563796-1-0
253 pages
Genre: Fiction, Mystery
Translated from Italian by Howard Curtis
Review copy provided by the publisher

Blood Sisters

Blood Sisters is an intriguing mystery set in the foggy countryside near Milan, Italy. The fog and the gloomy conditions add to the tension of this atmospheric novel.

The protagonist - also the narrator - is soon involved in something far removed from her normal line of work, as this excerpt explains:

I should have been having a quiet life,with everything mapped out: husband, home, children to be picked up from school and taken to their judo or dance classes. Instead of which I was alone, childless, and penniless. So penniless I'd had to accept an absurd job...

Anna Pavesi is a psychologist, not a detective but she is short of money so she agrees to an unusual assignment from a new client, Benedetta Vitali.

Benedetta wants Anna to investigate the strange circumstances of a road accident that killed her half-sister, Patrizia and the mysterious disappearance of Patrizia's body.

Was the road accident that killed Patrizia really a simple hit-and-run accident?

Does Benedetta know more about the incident than she is telling Anna?

As Anna begins questioning everyone connected to the case, she soon begins to piece together the puzzling details by using her professional knowledge about how people behave and being able to determine if someone is not telling the whole truth. However, her acute powers of observation soon lead Anna to uncover more than she bargained for, and she feels an increasing desperation to solve the mystery of the missing body.

The story about how Anna works to methodically put all the clues together to solve the mystery surrounding Patrizia's death, is intercut with Anna frantically digging the ground, searching for something that she dreads discovering but is keen to find.

As Anna slowly discovers the truth, the whole story is revealed to the reader. It all makes perfect sense, and adds up to a very satisfying ending.

If you like a good mystery, then I am certain you will enjoy reading Blood Sisters as much as I did. Indeed, I enjoyed reading this book so much, that I immediately read it again. I like the way the clues are presented and how the story unfolds little by little. I also liked the protagonist because she seemed very real. I particularly enjoyed her self-deprecating humour.

Blood Sisters is a fast-paced mystery which I thoroughly enjoyed reading and I wish to thank the publisher, Hersilia Press, for sending me a review copy.

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