The woman knelt over her lover, her face, her entire body, stiff with terror, staring at the blood on her hand. (p. 1) At first, readers may think this novel is about a gruesome murder, but very soon they discover that they are reading about the performance of operatic diva Flavia Petrelli in the ever-popular opera
Flavia is becoming increasingly concerned about the number of yellow roses she is receiving after her performances. In Venice, she receives dozens of them at the theatre and at her residence. She has also received other strange gifts in London, St. Petersburg and Amsterdam. Who is sending them? Is this a case of stalking by a deranged fan?
Commissario Guido Brunetti is at the performance of Tosca with his wife, Paola. Flavia and Guido are acquaintances, and Guido invites her to dinner at his in-laws’ palazzo. At dinner, Flavia reveals her concern about the strange gifts, and Guido promises to look into the matter. When a young singer that Flavia has praised is savagely attacked, Guido begins to suspect that someone is out to hurt Flavia. Will he find the deranged fan before Flavia is hurt?
Falling in Love reintroduces readers to the operatic world of La Fenice. Flavia Petrelli, Italy’s finest soprano, has appeared in two previous Brunetti novels. In the very first novel in the Commissario Guido Brunetti series,
Death at La Fenice, Flavia was accused of poisoning a renowned German conductor. This novel won the Suntory mystery fiction Grand Prize. In
Acqua Alta, Brunetti saved the life of Flavia’s female American love. In Falling in Love, Flavia is harassed by a deranged fan who will stop at nothing. The situation raises interesting questions about the price of fame, obsession and stalking.
Readers familiar with Donna Leon’s Commissario Brunetti series will be thrilled with this new operatic mystery. They will relish the details of life in the remarkable city of Venice, which is full of palazzos, canals, and tourists. New readers will discover that a Brunetti mystery is also a story of everyday life in a Venetian family. Brunetti’s wife, Paola, is a university professor and lover of art and literature. She is also an accomplished cook, a supportive wife, and loving mother of two teenagers. Family discussions will delight readers and provide unique perspectives on life in Venice.
Donna Leon is an American author of the very successful Commissario Guido Brunetti novels set in Venice. She has lived in Venice for over
25 years and worked as a lecturer in English Literature for the University of Maryland University College-Europe in Italy. Falling in Love is the 24th novel in the Brunetti series exploring both the pleasures and the dangers of “falling in love!”