Bitter Lemon Press is delighted to announce that it has acquired the English-language rights to Mario Giordano’s Aunt Poldi and the Sicilian Lions from German publishers Bastei Lübbe AG.
Set for publication in the UK in July 2016, and translated from the German by John Brownjohn, this is the first book in a new, charming and humorous crime series set on the beautiful island of Sicily, and featuring an investigator one cannot help but love.
On her 60th birthday, Isolde Oberreiter – or Aunt Poldi as she prefers to be called - decides that she has had enough. Thoroughly sick of life, Poldi moves from Bavaria to Sicily in order to drink herself to death with a sea view. Aided by her nephew, an aspiring author who is also the novel’s narrator, she drives to Sicily and finds the home of her dreams, conveniently located by a hypermarket with a plentiful supply of alcohol. But before hard liquor and depression get the better of her, fate intervenes with a mission.
Valentino, an attractive young man from the village who has been doing odd jobs in Poldi’s house, disappears without trace. Poldi sets out to investigate his disappearance herself, but when she finds Valentino’s corpse on the beach, his face blown off with a sawn-off shotgun, she becomes a potential suspect in his murder case. Poldi soon falls for the gorgeous Commissario Montana who has been assigned to lead the case and, after some initial misunderstandings, they form an investigative – and romantic – partnership. The delightful detail of this romance, and the extreme awkwardness of its retelling to her mortified nephew, produce some of the novel’s many high points, and exemplify the work’s warmth and wit.
The acquisition of Aunt Poldi and the Sicilian Lions comes a month ahead of the Mario Giordano’s visit to London in November when he will be speaking at the Goethe Institute on November 10th at a talk entitled ‘In the Library with the Lead Piping – Crime Fiction in Cooperation with New Books in German’. Taking part in the evening of murder mystery discussion will be a panel of German and British crime writers including Mario Giordano, Mechthild Borrmann, and Michael Ridpath, with the event chaired by Katharina Hall from Swansea University. You can find out more information about the event here: http://www.goethe.de/ins/gb/lon/pro/mop/Goethe_Events.pdf
Mario Giordano was born in Munich in 1963 and studied psychology at the University of Düsseldorf. He writes novels, books for adolescents, and screenplays. He lives in Cologne.