The new novel: RONDO VENEZIANO

Wed. March 15, 7:00 pm
Buchhandlung Thalia
Mariahilferstraße 99
1060 Wien

Susanne Ayoub – Rondo Veneziano

A Mystery

About the novel:

The dentist Adele is a workaholic, while her two former schoolmates are suffering from acute retirement shock. The three meet by chance on a vaporetto in Venice and immediately get entangled in a criminal case: Adele’s wealthy honorary aunt, the art collector Pauline, has had an apparent fatal accident in her palazzo.

Pauline’s life story is what fascinates first in this book, but it is also about seemingly stolen art and a great deal of money. The background of this multilayered mystery comprises not only the lanes and squares of Venice, but also the glass blowers on Murano, the funerary island of San Michele, and the Armenian community in Venice with its customs and traditions.

Excerpt from Part 1, Pauline’s memories:

After our coffee, we strolled across St. Mark’s Square. Tourists were few and far between in 1945. Mostly there were art afficionados like me, or students, and quite a few painters. There were no queues outside St. Mark’s Cathedral and the campanile. We rode the elevator up to the observation platform. More than forty years earlier, the original tower had collapsed while a lift was being installed. “On July 14, 1902, at quarter to ten. On the anniversary of the French Revolution,” Lauro said. “To this day, conspiracy theorists believe there’s a connection.” While he was speaking, the bells in the tower started ringing. Five bronze bells hung in the campanile, which rang at various times of day or on special occasions. Morning, noon, and midnight were heralded by Nona; the end of the day by Renghiera, Mezza Terza and Trottiera. Maragona tolled for funerals. And in former times, when Malefico resounded, the Venetians knew that an execution was imminent.

Translation Geoffrey C. Howes