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The Shape of Darkness (La forma del buio)



Original Language: Italian | 350 pp. | April 2017

2 Seas Represents: Dutch, French, Nordic, Portuguese and World English rights

Rights sold: Netherlands (Xander).


Following on the success of This Is How You Kill – over 80,000 copies sold, leaping straight to the top places in the book charts, one of the most powerful voices on the Italian scene is back with us again. A new investigation for Enrico Mancini through the sites of a dark and mysterious Rome, on the heels of a merciless killer, “The Sculptor”, who recomposes his victims in the shapes of mythological monsters.

Rome is in the hands of a murderer, a monster capable of giving a shape to darkness. A shadow of madness and terror that comes to life in the ritual of killing. His visions come true in the city’s least known places, though ones full of beauty, because what the killer is pursuing is a strange form of plastic art. He transforms himself and transfigures his victims into works inspired by classical mythology: Laocoon, the Siren, the Minotaur…

But these are just clues with no apparent sense behind them, unless one is able to interpret them. To analyse the crime scene. And come up with a profile. But Rome’s top profiler, Commissioner Enrico Mancini, is far from being the brilliant and determined man he once was. And the team that has always worked alongside him can’t seem to help him climb back out of the chasm.

As new “works” by what the press has baptized “The Sculptor” appear in the most various of settings, from the Borghese Gallery to the dark, spellbound Casina delle Civette (House of the Owls) in Villa Torlonia, from the abandoned zoo to the maze of the ancient Roman drainage system, Mancini is called back into service and placed before the most terrible and complicated challenge of his whole career. Or perhaps of his whole life.


The Netherlands (Xander)