Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Aurelio Zen -- Cabal

Michael Bibdin 1992. Cabal. Faber and Faber. London and Boston. 277p.

I have seen the Zen detective films on Masterpiece Mystery and really enjoyed them. The books are delightfully different. They give much more dimension to the character of Zen and the characters around him. For example, Tania, his girlfriend, is a budding business executive with an export business she runs on the side of her government job. The background of the story is the corruption and venality of Italians and the Italian state. Yet, it is a story told affectionately and humorously.

The TV version of Cabal implied that there really was a secret organization behind the murders. In the book it is strictly a comedy of errors and plotting. Also, the TV version took the story completely out of The Vatican. I guess it would have been too difficult to film there.

I can’t wait to read the other stories in the series.