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  • Location: Bologna

A Quiet Death in Italy

A Quiet Death in Italy

Why a Booktrail?

2000s: Bologna: city of secrets, suspicion . . . and murder


  • Genre: Crime

What you need to know before your trail

Bologna: city of secrets, suspicion . . . and murder

When the body of a radical protestor is found floating in one of Bologna’s underground canals, it seems that most of the city is ready to blame the usual suspects: the police.

But when private investigator Daniel Leicester, son-in-law to the former chief of police, receives a call from the dead man’s lover, he follows a trail that begins in the 1970s and leads all the way to the rotten heart of the present-day political establishment.

Beneath the beauty of the city, Bologna has a dark underside, and English detective Daniel must unravel a web of secrets, deceit and corruption – before he is caught in it himself.

Travel Guide

BookTrail your way around Bolgona

Bologna is the star of the show. There’s a plot and characters of course, but the city comes across loud and clear in every which way. The streets, graffiti, local colour and even the humble piadine sandwich are all in there. There’s also good use and exploration of the history of the city particularly when it comes to the academic  past. There’s plenty of it of course with Dante having been a student here. The university plays a major role and stands tall and proud over everything else.

‘The door opened onto a small park. I shouldn’t have been surprised – the city was built around its hidden spaces.’

The  city also has a very revolutionary history which plays a major role in the novel. This is explored via the main story of how the body of a radical is found in the canal There is tension and fear in the town but it soon becomes clear that the mayor and his cronies are all too keen in immediately stating that this was a terrible accident and nothing more.

Bologna here seems to be a city of two sides – one that is still under the shadows of its past and the other which is trying to free itself from that and model itself closer to what international tourists will expect.

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BookTrail Boarding Pass: A Quiet Death in Italy

Destination/location: Bologna   Author/guide: Tom Benjamin  Departure Time: 2000s

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