A story of a backward community living with a guilty conscience, a small-town lawyer with a passion for justice, and a boy in love. The incident happened in a small provincial town, Nuoro, in Sardinia about a hundred years ago. A prosperous farmer was shot dead in his olive grove, and the man's hired hand, a boy called Zenobi, was found guilty in absentia - he had already gone to ground earlier after being accused of stealing from his master's flock. The boy was now a bandit with a price on his head. An open-and-shut case. Only Zenobi's peasant mother was convinced that the lad was being framed, and the lawyer Bustianu was willing to see whether the evidence for conviction on either charge stood up against the facts. Neither the courts, however, nor the police had any wish to reopen the case - the lad had effectively admitted his guilt by absconding. And in view of the conspiracy of silence among the eyewitnesses to the shooting, the lawyer's chances looked negligible; his only recourse was to set a trap of his own. Unlike most novels of crime and detection, In the Heat of Summer, In the Depth of Winter is suffused with a beautiful delicacy of narrative texture that lifts it out of its provincial setting and makes it a tale for all ages.
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Used availability for Marcello Fois's The Advocate
August 2003 : UK Hardback
June 2004 : UK Paperback