Update:This blog is dormant. I have moved to Crime Scraps Review where you can read all my old posts and lots of new material. http://crimescraps2.wordpress.com
My choices for my best five books of the year have been sent to Karen at Euro Crime and after I had sent them in I realized that I had not even mentioned Andrea Camilleri!
But last night I was feeling a bit better from my recent illness [bronchitis, laryngitis, tonsillitis etc I am a man I don't get mere colds it is always more serious] and watched the first Montalbano episode I had recorded from BBC 4's Euro Sleuths season.
I can therefore create a new category alongside best crime fiction TV series in 2008, The Wire [what else], of best episode in a crime series, Montalbano, Excursion to Tindari.
The cast were almost perfect and although perhaps Luca Zingaretti, was a teeny bit younger than the Salvo Montalbano I had imagined, he made up for it with a virtuoso performance, which had me fully convinced well before the end of the episode. The supporting actors were superb with Cesare Bocci and Peppino Mazzota an example of perfect casting as Mimi Augello and Fazio.
Angelo Russo brillantly exhibited all the childlike vulnerability and bungling keenness of Catarella, although with subtitles a lot of the malapropisms were lost.
Food did not play such a major part in the TV production as it does in the books but there was recompense in the fact that Isabell Sollman as Ingrid and Katharina Bohm as Livia were even more gorgeous than the characters my imagination had created.
The stunning backdrop of the countryside around Ragusa, in Sicily, was beautifully filmed and the whole production was a real treat for Camilleri fans.
All the RAI TV episodes can be watched without subtitles here but let us hope the BBC show all the rest or they are released on DVD soon.