After four years of research and writing, John Naudi is today launching City of Shadows, a mystery thriller set in late 19th-century Valletta. The author, 31, says his love for the capital has helped him evoke life in what was then a teeming city with five times the population it hosts today.

The novel sees a British constable, Archibald Whitlock, who is sent to the Maltese islands to help solve a series of grisly murders haunting Valletta. At the same time, local Dominican Lorenzo Testaferrata answers the Lord’s call and goes to great lengths to save his flock from this terrible fate. Amid the mayhem, a troubled Maltese girl, Rita Formosa, gets lost in the dark and narrow lanes of Strada Stretta, where all forms of danger lurk.

The book launch will take place at Palazzo De La Salle, Valletta, today from 6 to 8pm. Following a short speech by the author, there will be book signings and paperbacks available for sale.

City of Shadows may also be purchased on Amazon as a paperback and Kindle, and can be accessed via

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