- unknown -
There is no Next Episode of Il giovane Montalbano planned.
The year is 1990, and Montalbano is deputy inspector in a remote village in the Sicilian mountains. A local thug with a history of theft is murdered and the evidence points to an elderly shepherd as the killer. In the meantime Montalbano is promoted to inspector and transferred to the seaside town of Vigàta, where he grew up. There he stumbles upon a piece of evidence that solves the case in the mountains, and also unravels the mystery of why a girl attempted to murder a judge.
The owner of the hotel in which Montalbano is living is shot dead on New Year's Eve. Was it an accident or something more sinister? Also, a dying woman's last words leads him to re-open a 40-year-old murder case, which may have resulted in a miscarriage of justice.
Montalbano clashes with his new deputy "Mimì" Augello when they investigate two unusual cases; in the first a box of worthless beer bottle caps are stolen from the house of a compulsive hoarder, and in the second a small child is apparently kidnapped, only to be released two hours later without any ransom demand being made.
Montalbano investigates the murder of a loan shark, for which there is initially no shortage of suspects, but the later discovery of another body nearby complicates matters. Meanwhile someone is putting up posters around Vigàta asking the inhabitants to vote in a referendum about the reputation of a politician's wife.
Montalbano receives a letter informing him of the accidental death of a worker at a construction site - posted before the man died. It turns out to be the latest in a series of similar "accidents", but he must act unofficially as the case is under the jurisdiction of the Carabinieri. Also, after someone shot at the noticeboard containing announcements of upcoming weddings, he must find out who is trying to prevent a marriage and why.
Montalbano investigates the slaying of an wealthy man whose wastrel son seems like the obvious suspect, and a ritualistic series of animal killings leads him to conclude that someone is planning a murder.