La ragazza nella nebbia (The Girl in the Fog)
A winter’s night. A car accident caused by heavy fog. The vehicle is wrecked, but the driver is unharmed, and yet the police detain him anyway. If he doesn’t even have a scratch on him, whose is the blood in his car?
The driver is a policeman called Vogel. Every time there’s a big news story, he will unfailingly appear on TV. He doesn’t have any criminological expertise, he’s not interested in fingerprints or DNA, and he doesn’t follow footprints or clues. He uses the media. ‘The public don’t want justice; they just want a monster, to give a name to their fear, to pretend to themselves that they are safe. I give them exactly what they want: someone to blame.’ It’s a story of suffering — and Vogel is the star.
In a valley high up in the Alps, a sixteen-year-old girl has disappeared. She left no clues behind her, not a trace. When Vogel arrives on the scene, he thinks he has found the perfect story. He convinces the media to take it up and, without there being the slightest evidence that this is an abduction, the hunt for the monster begins. The subject of speculation on the TV, internet and in the papers, the monster is identified. He is a humble teacher of literature, implicated only by suspicion, which, thanks to a hasty-trial-by-media, becomes widely accepted as the truth. He loses everything: his family, his job, his dignity.
When Vogel eventually finds a way to frame the teacher, the real monster contacts him anonymously. The policeman must decide whether to clear the name of an innocent man, or save himself by covering up what has happened. But now the monster wants the attention that awaits him.
Praise for La ragazza nella nebbia
‘Donato Carrisi could have carried on in the vein of his previous novels, thrillers with geometric plots, but decided instead, with The Girl in the Fog, to get his hands dirty and explore the world of crime reporting. […] The reward comes in the form of twists and turns, which come thick and fast in the final chapters, for nothing is as it seems.’ – Corriere della Sera
‘Sharper than Kay Scarpetta and John Grishman, Vogel is a character who solves mystery cases by creating a media stir around the crime. Why can’t he find Anna Lou, the ginger-haired and freckled girl who disappeared among the fog?’ – L’Arena