Un Sabato, con gli Amici / One Saturday, with friends

One Saturday, with Friends is Camilleri’s most surprising novel, first published by Mondadori in 2009. It is not a detective story. Although the encumbrance of a corpse is not lacking, with the questions it raises, on the sidelines of a fake as much as murky attempt at blackmail. Nor does it lack, the non-mystery, a strong narrative tension: immediately inaugurated on the cover by that warning sign given by the comma in the title that makes the qualification of friendship at least ambiguous, if not deadly. The novel is ruthless. For it, Camilleri has divested himself of the humorous flourishes and colors of vigatese. The unredeemable theater of horrors has imposed on him a dry Italian: fast, sharp and cold; even chilling. Deliberately unspecified is the location of the story. The town has no name. It is abstracted from any reference. Friends make a weekly date for themselves. It is the Saturday night reunion. For once, they involve in the ritual a comrade long given up for lost. The guest is uncomfortable, socially different. He is openly gay and a communist. He has no money. Most importantly, he holds photographs that are heavily compromising for a member of the fellowship. He is found dead. He had fallen accidentally, leaning drunkenly over the parapet of the terrace, it was agreed. But who had given the push, if push there had been?