"Artfully understated. . . . [An] elegant series."- The New York Times Book Review
"The richest mystery here, however, is Florence itself, whose intricate politics and class structure Nabb parses with precision and wit. . . . Nabb is sweetly droll."- The Washington Post Book World
"[Nabb] writes in graceful, calm prose."-The Associated Press
"Lovely measured language. . . . Offers such pleasures as great local atmosphere and rich characterizations."- Publishers Weekly
"Lean, elegant prose that surpasses the best of Simenon."- Kirkus Reviews
"[A] superb series."- Booklist
"Guarnaccia's Florence is a delightful place to visit."- Mystery Scene
The body of a woman has been found half-submerged in an ornamental fish pond high up in Florence's Boboli Gardens. At first, the woman cannot be identified; only her skull remains. The marshal must use her clothing and a shoe to trace her.
She turns out to be a young Japanese woman apprenticed to one of Florence's legendary custom shoemakers, crotchety old Peruzzi. Could he have killed his protégé? Or did jealousy drive his other apprentice to murder? The neighbors have seen Akiko with a lover-a brilliant young Carabinieri-who has disappeared. Has he fled to avoid arrest?
The marshal must go to Rome to complete his investigation. When he returns to Florence he can identify the killer, but can he bring him to justice?