In this 26th mystery featuring Inspector Montalbano, the Italian sleuth investigates two deaths, including that of theater director Carmelo Catalanotti. Montalbano finds all of Catalanotti's dossiers and plays, the notes on the characters, and the notes on his last drama, Dangerous Turn—all clues.
Camilleri...used this book to give us a brilliantly constructed mystery with much humor, new insights into his main character, and a deeper understanding of the author himself and the world of theater that he loved and in which he honed his craft ... [a] relationship inspires in Montalbano a desire to reinvent himself and adds a twist to the novel’s ending that is a smoothly executed volta from the standpoint of the writing but left me, as a fan, a bit annoyed with Salvo. But not so annoyed as to dislike the book. Reading The Sicilian Method was time well spent both for the insights into Camilleri and for the entertainment of watching my favorite detective eat his way through the problems laid before him until he solves a complicated, exciting mystery set against the magical landscape of Sicily. If you’re a devotee of the series, you won’t want to miss it and will want more.
Anyone who’s subjected themselves to drama school at any level—or even to ordinary high school—will grasp the real level of malice and damage produced by the far-too-clever director. So it’s a relief to tag along with the mundane and sometimes stumbling efforts of police procedure, as Montalbano marvels at his discoveries and tries to find the right combination of person and scene to explain both the original murder and a second one. Stephen Sartarelli’s translation allows Camilleri’s deft humor to come through vividly; his attempts to portray lower classes by giving them Cockney-style slang are less successful but tolerable for the sake of enjoying this lively crime novel. There’s no need to read the other 25 Inspector Montalbano books before The Sicilian Method, but this enjoyable romp may send readers scurrying for them afterward, giving birth to a new generation of collectors of Camilleri’s dark humor and neatly twisted plots, along with the persistence of an inspector who can’t ever let himself be defeated by crime.
... the reader is once again happily transported to Vigàta, Sicily, where Montalbano is coping, one delicious meal at a time, with two murders. The arrival of forensics expert Antonia Nicoletti sets [Montalbano] off on a wild roller-coaster ride as his infatuation with her grows, while he dodges calls from his longtime lover, Livia. Fans will laugh out loud as he frantically sets about remaking himself[.]