The Killing Tide by Jean-Luc Bannalec is the fifth novel in the internationally bestselling Commissaire Dupin series.
Deep sea fishers, dolphin researchers, smugglers, and an island shrouded in myth in the middle of the rough Atlantic ocean: Commissaire Dupin had sworn he would never again investigate on the ocean, but his fifth case takes him offshore, off the west coast of Brittany on a beautifully sunny day in June. He lands on the unique Île de Sein, populated by more rabbits than people, where the hairdresser arrives by boat and which was formerly inhabited by powerful witches and even the devil himself. In front of this impressive backdrop—between the islands of Molène, Ouessant, and the bay of Douarnenez—Dupin and his team follow a puzzling case that pushes them to their very limits.
A particularly tough day begins for Commisaire Georges Dupin in Bannalec's superb fifth Brittany mystery (after 2017's The Missing Corpse) when a fisherwoman from the le de Sein is found in a container full of rotting fish with her throat slit. The discovery of two more people with their throats cut one a dolphin researcher, the other a retired professor launches a fast-paced investigation that puts perennially seasick Dupin, a former Paris police detective who's a fish out of water in western Brittany, in headlong pursuit of a killer across the islands off the port of Douarnenez and that exposes the seamy underside of commercial fishing. The dramatic conclusion leaves Dupin to reflect on the shadowy notions of justice, ambiguous endings, and the many mysteries of Brittany, where Celtic legends and Breton folklore are accepted as matter of fact parts of modern life. Bannelec (the pen name of J rg Bong) has concocted the perfect blend of police procedural and travelogue.
The Killing Tide
I am a huge fan of Commissaire Dupin. This story is excellent with the requisite dose of Breton atmosphere. I only gave it 3 stars because the English grammar was atrocious. There were so many grammatical errors, even a phrase transposed from one sentence to the next, that it diminished my enjoyment of the book. Between a translator, editor and proof readers these things shouldn’t have happened. I hope someone at the publishing house takes note of this review. Shame on them.