Excerpt from Blood From A Stone by Donna Leon, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Blood From A Stone

A Commissario Guido Brunetti Mystery

By Donna Leon

Blood From A Stone
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • Hardcover: Apr 2005,
    256 pages.
    Paperback: Apr 2006,
    352 pages.

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book

Book Reviewed by:
BookBrowse Review Team

Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt

The white-haired man shook his head. 'No. As I told you, my only concern was my wife. When I heard her shout, everything else went out of my head, so I couldn't even tell you which people from our group were there.'

Brunetti turned back to the woman and asked, 'Do you remember who was there, Doctor?'

She closed her eyes, as if trying to recall the scene yet again. Finally she said, 'There were the Petersons; they were standing to my left, and the man was behind me on the right. And I think Lydia Watts was on the other side of the Petersons.' She kept her eyes closed. When she opened them she said, 'No, I don't remember anyone else. That is, I know that we were all there in a bunch, but those are the only ones I can remember seeing.'

'How many people are in your group, Doctor?'

The husband answered, 'Sixteen. Plus spouses, that is,' he immediately corrected. 'Most of us are retired or semi-retired doctors, all from the North-east.'

'Where are you staying?' he asked.

'At the Paganelli,' he answered. Brunetti was surprised that a group that large could find room there, and that Americans would have the good sense to choose it.

'And this evening, for dinner? Is the group scheduled to eat somewhere in particular?' Brunetti wondered if he could perhaps locate them all and talk to them now, while whatever memories they had would still be fresh.

The Crowleys exchanged a glance. The man said, 'No, not really. This is our last night in Venice, and some of us decided to eat on our own, so we don't have any plans, not really.' He gave an embarrassed smile and added, 'I guess we're sort of tired of eating with the same people every night.'

'We were just going to walk around until we saw a place we liked and eat there,' his wife added, smiling across at her husband as if proud of their decision. 'But it's awfully late now.'

'And the group?' Brunetti persisted.

'They're booked to eat at some place near San Marco,' the woman said.

Her husband interrupted, 'But we didn't like the sound of it, all that local colour stuff.'

Brunetti had to admit they were probably right. 'Do you remember the name?' he asked.

Both shook their heads regretfully; the man spoke for them. 'I'm sorry, officer, but I don't.'

'You said it was your last night here,' he began, and they nodded. 'What time do you leave tomorrow morning?'

'Not until ten,' she said. 'We take the train to Rome, and then we fly out on Thursday. Home in time for Christmas.'

Brunetti pulled their bill towards him, added the cost of his own coffee to it, and put fifteen Euros on the table. The man started to object, but Brunetti said, 'It's police business,' and that lie seemed to satisfy the doctor.

'I can recommend a restaurant,' he said, and then added, 'I'd like to come and talk to you, and to these other people, in your hotel tomorrow morning.'

'Breakfast's at seven-thirty,' she explained, 'and the Petersons are always right on time. I'll call Lydia Watts, when we get back if you like, and ask her to come down at eight so you can talk to her.'

'Is your train at ten or do you leave the hotel at ten?' Brunetti asked, hoping to be spared the need to be on the other side of San Marco by seven-thirty in the morning.

'The train, so we have to leave the hotel at nine-fifteen. There's a boat coming to take us to the station.'

Brunetti got to his feet and waited while the man helped his wife into her parka and then put on his own. Wearing them, the old people doubled in size. He led the way to the door, and held it open for them. Outside, in the campo, he pointed to the right and told them to walk along Calle della Mandorla to the Rosa Rossa and to tell the owner that Commissario Brunetti had sent them.

Copyright © 2005 by Donna Leon and Diogenes Verlag AG Zurich. Reprinted with permission from Grove Atlantic, Inc. All rights reserved.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
Sign up, win books!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Take This Man
    Take This Man
    by Brando Skyhorse
    "A chorus of six men calling me Son might sound ludicrous to you, but to me it's the sound of ...
  • Book Jacket: The Hundred-Year House
    The Hundred-Year House
    by Rebecca Makkai
    Rebecca Makkai's sophomore novel The Hundred-Year House could just have easily been titled ...
  • Book Jacket
    The Valley of Amazement
    by Amy Tan
    "Mirror, Mirror on the wall
    I am my mother after all!"

    In my pre-retirement days as a professor ...

First Impressions

Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!

Books that
expand your

Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only

Find out more.

Book Discussions
Book Jacket

The Arsonist
by Sue Miller

Published Jun. 2014

Join the discussion!

  1.  133Tomlinson Hill:
    Chris Tomlinson

All Discussions

Win this book!
Win The Angel of Losses

The Angel of Losses

"Family saga, mystery, and myth intersect in Feldman's debut novel." - Booklist


Word Play

Solve this clue:

E C H A Silver L

and be entered to win..

Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.

Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.