"Wry humor and offbeat plots blend with a subtly dangerous charm to make Fred Vargas the queen of French crime writers." —Martin Walker, author of the Bruno, Chief of Police Series
“A wildly imaginative series.”—The New York Times
Awarded the International Dagger by the Crime Writers' Association four times, Fred Vargas has earned a reputation in Europe as a mystery author of the first order. In This Night's Foul Work, the intuitive Commissaire Adamsberg teams up with Dr. Ariane, a pathologist with whom he crossed paths twenty years ago, to unravel a beguiling mystery that begins with the discovery of two bodies in Paris's Porte de la Chapelle. Adamsberg believes it may be the work of a killer with split personalities, who is choosing his or her victims very carefully. As other murders begin to surface, Adamsberg must move quickly in order to stop the "Angel of Death" from killing again.
The outstanding fourth whodunit to be made available in the U.S. from Vargas (Wash This Blood Clean from My Hand) makes it's easy to see why he's twice won the CWA's International Dagger Award. Paris Commissaire Jean-Baptiste Adamsberg, an endearing oddball sleuth in the tradition of John Dickson Carr's Henry Merrivale, is convinced that the two narcotics dealers recently found with slit throats weren't the victims of business rivals, relying largely on his intuition and the unexplained presence of dirt under the dead men's fingernails. Adamsberg's dogged pursuit of small details leads him to a series of unusual mutilations of wild deer as well as to a serial killer who targets virgins and may be seeking the ingredients to an elixir for eternal life. While the final twist will be less than shocking to some readers, the immensely enjoyable prose, seasoned liberally with humor, should help the author gain the larger American audience he deserves.