|+A young short-order cook marries a wealthy widow but keeps his girlfriend on the side. When his wife finds out, she throws him out. When she turns up missing, he is a suspect in her disappearance. + Vendetta, the very word itself invokes dread and strikes the mood of brooding terror but to live on the island of Corsica, home of the vendetta is to be steeped in the tradition of violent massacres and the fatalistic expectation of ferocious vengeance as a way of life. At least it would have been so just a hundred years ago when these famous words were first written, “It was a hand, a man’s hand. Not a skeleton hand all bright and clean but a hand black and desiccated with the yellow nails, the naked muscles and traces of blood upon the bones at the point which they’d been severed with the blow of an axe about the middle of the forearm. The fingers extraordinarily long were attached to enormous tendons still held in their places here and there by strips of skin. That hand was something hideous. It made one think involuntarily of savage vengeance and in spite of the putrescent look of death and dissolution it seemed to have a life of its own…”
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