Friday, March 10, 2023

The mystery of the six tiramisu - by Maria Cristina Buoso - Review by Maria Teresa De Donato

 The Mystery of the Six Tiramisu

The cases of Chief Commissioner Caterina Angeli

by Maria Cristina Buoso


Review by Maria Teresa De Donato


In the city of Padua, in the neighborhood where the Magnolia condominium is located, and a crime was committed some time ago, a stranger, for apparently incomprehensible reasons which will emerge only at the end of the book, is creating great havoc.

Is it the same person or multiple people? And Are these facts related to each other or not? – ask the investigators.

A series of circumstances and behaviors leads to the hypothesis that it may be the same individual.

Within a few days, he entered some offices and, while no one saw him, he ransacked everything: simple acts of vandalism, or was he looking for something?

He also visited the veterinary surgeon Andrea Stella. While going to her room for a moment, she rummaged inside a basket full of shells, stones, and other objects placed at the entrance to the surgery exclusively decorative. When Andrea came out of her office and asked him what she was doing with her, he gave her a shove and spilled the hamper's contents onto the floor.

Alice's bakery has also been targeted. Taking advantage of the fact that no one was looking at him, and while she had gone into the other room to answer a call on her cell phone, the stranger destroyed some tiramisu, throwing them on the floor and spreading them on the floor. The latter were ready to be delivered to the customers listed on a list left next to the tray on which they had been deposited, waiting to be temporarily placed in the cold room.

The cameras positioned in Alice's pastry shop have filmed this person and made it possible to understand that he is a man, dressed in dark clothes, who wears - we are at the time of Covid - a mask, as well as a pair of gloves that allow him not to leave fingerprints.

Of the six tiramisus on the list, the only one that perhaps survived the massacre because it has already been withdrawn is that of a certain Teresa Sales, a woman who has recently moved to the neighborhood and whom no one knows or knows what job she does. Teresa, however, while the police investigate, is not at home. She probably left, and it is impossible to know where she is and when she will return.

"Have you already eaten the tiramisu you bought in Alice's pastry shop or kept it in the fridge to enjoy on your return?" – ask the investigators. In fact, according to the actions carried out so far by the attacker, the police fear that, if he has not yet found what he is looking for, he will try in every way to verify if this something is found in the very last tiramisu of the series, i.e., the one purchased by Teresa Sales.

In this case, the probable anger and frustration accumulated in not having yet managed to find and take possession of this 'something' that he is anxiously looking for could make the man violent, leading him to commit murder, something that, up to now, thanking the heaven, it didn't happen.

Although everyone, victims and investigators, including Chief Commissioner Claudia Trini, Superintendent Luciana Verdi and her assistant Alessia Goretti and other colleagues of the Flying Squad all give themselves a great deal to conduct the investigation and solve this case too, the real protagonist of this whodunit is, in my opinion, Chief Commissioner Caterina Angeli who recently retired.

Caterina, in fact, despite having officially stopped working, will always remain a policeman in her DNA (p. 39), as Claudia points out, smiling, who always counts on her help and her total dedication to each case.

As usual, it will be Caterina, with her vibrant creativity, her profound intuition, and the experience gained over the various decades in service, who will be able to unravel the skein, solving the mystery and bring, after having set a trap to the unknown thanks to the help of victims and investigators, to his arrest and his final confession.

In short, as her son Amos claims, "the day that Caterina manages to do nothing for the whole day... it will snow on August 15th" (p. 89). Perhaps her ex-husband, father of Amos and her twin sister Kalene, and above all, her in-laws could have shown more understanding and empathy and understood how great passion Caterina has always had for her work. If they had, probably the two, who still love each other, would never have left.

A light and even funny yellow, full of twists and food for thought, written in a lean, fast, and pleasant style, typical of the author Maria Cristina Buoso, whose reading I recommend to everyone.