The Snack Thief begins when a Tunisian immigrant, while on sea aboard a fishing boat is gunned down. Salvu refuses to get involved in that case as another body is found inside the elevator of a residential building. The two cases gets connected later as Salvu finds himself in front of a mystery involving characters ranging from a snack thief to an international criminal.
Camilleri, though used international politics in this book, kept it minimum and thus didn’t turn the book into a hardcore spy thriller. Rather he used the backdrop of international terrorism to create a piece of crime fiction which had a simple plot, and the flow of which wasn’t to bumpy. The book never entered the zone where the plot gets too twisted to follow; rather it maintained calmness throughout, with liberal sprinklings of twists here and there.
The book like the others from Camilleri weren’t devoid of humour. Paras which contained scenes of Salvu reading the newspaper and going through the headlines, though brutal, still brought laughter to the reader. These scenes return in every book, and the way in which the crimes are described makes them funny each time. Such is the quality of Andrea Camilleri as a writer.