Best-selling author Martin Walker’s previous two novels starring Chief of Police Bruno Courrèges became hits with fans and critics around the globe. In this thrilling third mystery, Bruno has his hands full with trouble in the truffle trade in St. Denis’ marketplace. And when a friend is murdered, things really start heating up.
©2010 Walker and Watson Ltd (P)2011 Recorded Books, LLC
"Walker’s bucolic mysteries offer a gentle reminder to slow down and smell the grapes.” (New York Times Book Review)
Love books! Classics and lighter fiction, mysteries (not too violent please :-). And selective non-fiction--whatever takes my fancy.
Bruno Courrèges is the Chief of Police (indeed, the only policeman) in the small, fictional town of St. Denis, located in the rural Périgord region of France. A lovely small town where everybody knows each other would seem the unlikeliest spot on earth for murderous crimes to occur. But they do, often bringing in more high intelligence concerns than might be imagined for such a quiet spot.
In this book, Bruno is faced with managing trouble between Chinese and Vietnamese gangs, with roots leading back to the time before the war. There is also something strange taking place in the lucrative truffle market, and Bruno has to handle both situations at once. As often happens in these books, the trouble is not just an upset between neighbors, but rather arises from a greater and older piece of French history.
The people are richly and beautifully drawn, and through them, we sense the character of people living a lifestyle that feels threatened by in the incursion of modern government oversight and regulations. But when the need arises, Bruno is very capable of shifting from small town policeman (think American Andy Griffith) to capably working hand in hand with the more sophisticated levels of police and intelligence communities. After which, he always comes home to his modest house, his cooking, loving, and community involvement.
This is just a wonderful series, and the narration is superb! I only wish there were more of them. It sure makes me wish I cook book a trip to southwest France to see the area from which these stories arise. I so very much recommend them to anyone intrigued with stories that evoke a brilliant sense of location and people!
My least favorite
The ending was like a soap opera and it felt as if the author rushed to finish/tie up all the loose ends...and the last few lines were really (I hate to say it) sappy.
I almost gave up on this novel. It is the first Martin Walker book I've read so I hadn't read the others in the series. It's slow to start, almost like the beginnings of a painting where the author sets the scene and atmosphere for quite a while but if you keep reading you get a full and interesting picture once things get going. Now that I've read another, the characters are engaging and keep me reading.
Martin Walker does it again. He creates interesting characters and a well thought out plot. History, good food, and a feel for the countryside makes for a great read. Bruno is an honorable and decent human being who always strives to do the right thing. He has his faults but always manages to rise above them. You will fall in love with him.
This is my first exposure to Bruno of Perigord. I have actually been to this area, and still the detail was enlightening and compelling. A modern-day mystery with modern day stakes nevertheless rooted in the past. I look forward to another yarn with Bruno, if for no other reason than for the cooking sequences. Educational on so many levels!
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