"Roll over, Maigret. Commissaire Dupin has arrived."—M.C. Beaton
Commissaire Georges Dupin, a cantankerous, Parisian-born caffeine junkie recently relocated from the glamour of Paris to the remote (if picturesque) Breton coast, is dragged from his morning croissant and coffee to the scene of a curious murder. The local village of Pont-Aven—a sleepy community by the sea where everyone knows one other and nothing much seems to happen—is in shock. The legendary ninety-one-year-old hotelier Pierre-Louis Pennec, owner of the Central Hotel, has been found dead.
A picture-perfect seaside village that played host to Gaugin in the nineteenth century, Pont-Aven is at the height of its tourist season and is immediately thrown into uproar. As Dupin delves into the lives of the victim and the suspects, he uncovers a web of secrecy and silence that belies the village's quaint image.
A delectable read, Jean-Luc Bannalec's Death in Brittany transports readers to the French coast, where you can practically smell the sea air and taste the perfectly cooked steak frites in an expertly crafted, page-turning mystery for fans of Martin Walker.
Francophiles and art lovers will welcome Bannalec's good old-fashioned detective story set in Brittany. When a prominent hotel owner, Pierre-Louis Pennec, is found stabbed to death in his restaurant in the village of Pont-Aven, Commissaire Georges Dupin, a former Paris policeman exiled to what he considers a backwater, investigates. Why would someone kill a terminally-ill nonagenarian? Pennec and his forebears amassed an impressive collection of art by painters who have frequented Pont-Aven since the end of the 19th century. Could one painting in the collection be a previously unknown Gauguin? The members of Pennac's small, acrimonious family and the local art society are anxious to find out. Like Simenon's Maigret, Dupin is a loner, who relies on thorough data and objective analysis to make his deductions. Bannelec excels at plotting and pacing, as well as vivid descriptions of the Finist re countryside. Readers will look forward to seeing more Dupin books from this talented author.
Customer ReviewsSee All
A great read
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and the author's style of writing. I was in immediately transported to Brittany. Dupin is delightful. I want more; now! I was disappointed to find that there are not 20 books with his crime solving adventures. Please write more, soon.
Death in Brittany
My daughter suggested I try this author in the midst of her visit to Brittany this week. I believed her, recalling how she had led me to Death in Venice and author Donna Leon long ago whilst I was wandering loose in Venice myself.
So I was off, and found myself entranced. The character is very Parisian, exiled to Brittany because of various flights of rebellion. The Bretons are Bretons, and the juxtaposition gives a sauce to the story as it winds it's way through the local population in an utterly charming way.
I loved getting lost in Brittany.
Whidbey Island, Washington