Marina’s library was organized by date. The date she had acquired the book, the date she had first read it, the date of the last time she read it, the date she had last lovingly run her fingers down its spine, wondering whether she’d have time to read it again before she died. As you might imagine, the books’ positions changed over the years, with some books completely forgotten, stacked helter-skelter in the cellar’s former wine racks.

Or almost completely forgotten.

It was a dark and rainy night, and Marina was lingering in the guest room, next to the shelf of 1957s, wondering whether she would be able to work up the courage to finally read the last book her husband, Rinaldo, had given her before his death (an obscure black comedy by Raymond Chandler, called The Wax Museum, published in 1956 by Auden Press), when she heard the glass shatter in the kitchen downstairs.

Glad of the interruption, she discovered an unusual figure (but what burgalur is usual?) rummaging through the drawers–in search of a knife, as it turned out.

“Excuse me?” she whispered.