In The Potter's Field, thirteenth novel in the series, Salvo goes to bed with Ingrid. Out of bed, his choice of reading matter, always a delight to Camilleri's readers, is a special treat this time. (OK, I'll give it away: Salvo, whose reading in previous novels has included Georges Simenon and Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö, this time chooses a novel by Andrea Camilleri.)
The political gibes, as barbed as ever, are delivered with greater concision even as they ripen into a kind of weariness at the state of the world, though the gibes are as funny as always. Camilleri has deepened and mellowed his protagonist's view.
In previous books, this has taken the form of increasing tenderness in Salvo's regard for his distant lover, Livia. Here, he feels the pain of a friend's betrayal more sharply than a younger Salvo would have, and his kinship with his fellow creatures even turns him briefly off seafood after he admires the fish at an aquarium in Genoa. (Can I have veal milanese? he asks a waiter. "Sure," the waiter replies, "if you go to Milan." Salvo settles for an excellent plate of fried sole.)
© Peter Rozovsky 2011