Renee Conoulty: Involuntary Witness by Gianrico Carofiglio


Sunday, 5 April 2015

Involuntary Witness by Gianrico Carofiglio

"Carofiglio writes crisp, ironical novels that are as much love stories and philosophical treatises as they are legal thrillers."—The New Yorker

"Raises the standard for crime fiction. Carofiglio's deft touch has given us a story that is both literary and gritty—and one that speeds along like the best legal thrillers. His insights into human nature—good and bad—are breathtaking." —Jeffery Deaver

The first in the Guido Guerrieri series.

A nine-year-old boy is found murdered at the bottom of a well near a popular beach resort in southern Italy. In what looks like a hopeless case for Guido Guerrieri, counsel for the defense, a Senegalese peddler is accused of the crime. Faced with small-town racism fuelled by the recent immigration from Africa, Guido attempts to exploit the esoteric workings of the Italian courts.

More than a perfectly paced legal thriller, this relentless suspense novel transcends the genre. A powerful attack on racism and a fascinating insight into the Italian judicial process, it is also an affectionate portrait of a deeply humane hero.

Gianrico Carofiglio, a member of the senate in Italy, was an anti-Mafia prosecutor in Bari, a port on the coast of Puglia. He has been involved with trials concerning corruption, organized crime, and the traffic of human beings. He has written four Guido Guerrieri novels, all bestsellers, having sold over two million copies worldwide.

Hey! Here's my review.

This book was originally written in Italian. I listened to the English translation audiobook. The narrator was well spoken with a British accent.

This court drama set in Italy made me realise how different the legal systems can be in different countries. In Australia, this case would never have made it into court in the first place as all the evidence was circumstantial. The story is told from the POV of Guido, the lawyer defending an African man who was charged with kidnapping and murdering a young boy. We are also given some insight into Guido's personal life. 

This is the first book in a series. While I enjoyed the book, I have no immediate plans to read the next one.

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