The Wolf Pit

Milan, 1631. The Thirty Years War, epidemics and superstition play havoc on the Spanish-ruled Italian city. Lieutenant Diego Antonio Olivares, a young lawman, is investigating the murder of an aristocratic marauder known as Nameless, whose much celebrated conversion became a point of honor for the saintly Cardinal Borromeo. Olivares has survived the plague, thus he can travel freely under orders across the slowly recovering Duchy, as far as the lands of "Swiss lords," where witch trials are widespread among Catholics and Lutherans alike. Well, danger will find him everywhere, in days when the Devil is believed to ride in a coach pulled by coal-black horses. Suspects and bizarre clues multiply, baffling Olivares and his gendarmes even as they explore dank city slums among cutthroats and soldiers of fortune, prostitutes and grave-diggers for hire. Worse: the lieutenant’s relentless search for the truth pits him against the interests of administrators, noblemen, and the religious authorities in and out of Milan. Thanks to his insight, doggedness, and initiative, having more than once risked his life in the process, Olivares will finally get to the bottom of this complex criminal case. Each in their own way, the characters of Manzoni's celebrated novel – Renzo, Lucia, their cowardly parish priest Don Abbondio, and more – play a part in the solution.
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