With Inspector Montalbano's most recent outings hitting the New York Times bestseller list, Andrea Camilleri's darkly refined Italian mysteries have become favorites of American crime novel fans. This latest installment finds Montalbano in search of his missing right-hand man. Before leaving for vacation with Livia, Montalbano witnesses a seagull doing an odd dance on the beach outside his home--and then the bird suddenly drops dead. Stopping in at his office for a quick check before heading off, he notices that Fazio is nowhere to be found and soon learns that he was last seen on the docks, secretly working on a case. Montalbano sets out to find him and discovers that the seagull's dance of death may provide the key to understanding a macabre world of sadism, extortion, and murder.