Synopsis: Rome, 1944. While the Allies are fighting their way up the Italian peninsula, the capital city lives the most dramatic days of Nazi occupation: curfew, hunger, arrests and deportation, mass murder… Martin Bora, the Wehrmacht officer and protagonist of Lumen and Liar Moon has the complex and delicate task of solving not one, but three murders. The victims are a young German embassy employee who “accidentally” fell to her death from a fourth-floor window, a Roman society lady found dead on the scene of a most objectionable love tryst, and a headstrong cardinal of the Roman Curia, personally known to Bora and, like the officer, secretly active in the resistance against the Third Reich. With Italian police inspector Sandro Guidi at his side, Bora sets off to establish the truth and unmask the culprit. What he discovers in the end – after an investigation on the brink of self-destruction, obstructed by “friends” and “foes” alike, face-to-face with historical characters like Field Marshal Kesselring and Monsignor Montini (the future Pope Paul VI). (Source: Bitter Lemon Press)
Ben Pastor is the nom de plume of Maria Verbena Volpi. Born in Italy, she lived for thirty years in the United States, working as a university professor in Vermont, before returning to her home country. A Dark Song of Blood is the third in the Martin Bora series and follows on from the success of Lumen and Liar Moon, also published by Bitter Lemon Press. Ben Pastor is the author of other novels including The Water Thief and The Fire Waker (published to high acclaim in the US by St. Martin’s Press), and is considered one of the most talented writers in the field of historical fiction. In 2008 she won the prestigious Premio Zaragoza for best historical fiction.
The complete Martin Bora series (Source: Wikipedia.it) The last date refers to the year in which the plot unfolds.
- Lumen, (Lumen, 1999), Hobby & Work Publishing, 2001; Sellerio ed., 2012, traduzione di Paola Bonini – Krakow, Poland. Autumn 1939
- Luna bugiarda, (Liar Moon, 2001), Hobby & Work Publishing, 2002; Sellerio ed., 2013, traduzione di Marilia Piccone – Italy, Venetia Region, 1943
- Kaputt Mundi, (A Dark Song of Blood, 2002), Hobby & Work Publishing, 2003,traduzione di Paola Bonini – Rome, 1944
- La canzone del cavaliere, (The Horseman’s song, 2003), Hobby & Work Publishing, 2004, traduzione di Paola Bonini – Spain, summer 1937
- Il morto in piazza, (The Dead in The Square, 2005), Hobby & Work Publishing, 2005, traduzione di Judy Faellini – Italy, June, 1944
- La Morte, il Diavolo e Martin Bora, (Odd Pages, 2008), Hobby & Work Publishing, 2008, traduzione di Judy Faellini e Paola Bonini – Ukraine, 1941
- La Venere di Salò, (The Venus of Salò, 2005), Hobby & Work Publishing, 2006, traduzione di Judy Faellini – Salò, 1944
- Il Signore delle cento ossa, (Master of One Hundred Bones, 2010), Sellerio ed., 2011, traduzione di Paola Bonini – Germany, spring 1939.
- Il cielo di stagno, (Tin Sky, 2013), Sellerio ed., 2013, traduzione di Luigi Sanvito – Ucrania, 1943
- La strada per Itaca, (The Road to Ithaca, 2014), Sellerio ed., 2014, traduzione di Luigi Sanvito – Moscow, spring of 1941