The Dying Season: A Bruno Courreges Investigation by Martin Walker

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The Dying Season: A Bruno Courreges Investigation by Martin Walker

Category: Crime
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: The ninth in the series but far from running out of steam I think this is the best one yet!
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 336 Date: July 2015
Publisher: Quercus
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1848664050

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It's said that you should never meet your heroes but Bruno Courrèges, chief of police of the sleepy Dordogne town of St Denis, has no such thoughts when he's invited to the 90th birthday celebrations of the man who has been his hero since he was a child. Marco Desaix is a war hero, flying ace and a man with high level political connections in France, Russia and Israel - and he's known as The Patriarch. The party - if you can use such a mundane word for an occasion which includes a fly past by the air force - went well, with only one minor disruption when an old family friend accosted one of the daughters of the Desaix family and was disinclined to let go. Still, it was well known that he was an alcoholic and no one seemed surprised when Gilbert was removed without ceremony by the gamekeeper.

Bruno was surprised when the Mayor rang him the following morning to tell him that there had been a death at the Chateaux: this wasn't how he usually heard about sudden death and he wasn't entirely certain whether it was his hackles rising or his suspicious mind. But when he arrived at the chateaux, it was Gilbert who was dead - and the death certificate signed. Gilbert had choked on his own vomit and Bruno couldn't avoid the thought that he was being hurried on his way just as much as Gilbert was.

There wasn't time to do anything though as Bruno was called away to an accident involving vehicles and some deer. Imogen had a house and land on which she did not permit hunting of any sort and deer are not daft - they know where they're safe - but so many had congregated on Imogen's land that there wasn't adequate food for them. Sometimes they attempted to cross the road to the forest where there was food, but they were in such poor health that accidents on the road were inevitable. Local people - particularly the hunters - were angry and Bruno knew that it wasn't just a road traffic accident that he would have to deal with.

You might think that I've told you rather a lot about the plot, but I haven't. There's a meaty plot in this book (the pun isn't intended, but it's not a book to read if you're on a diet as the descriptions of the food are mouth watering) as Bruno tries to balance the views of the local hunters (of whom he counts himself a proud member) on one side and the environmentalists who want to protect the local wildlife on the other - and it's a problem which isn't restricted to the Dordogne. Gilbert's death is more of a puzzle: what are the family covering up? And why do so many people comment that Gilbert must have got drunk very quickly as he'd been perfectly sober when he talked to them?

I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

I read this book and I bought myself an audio download, which was absolutely superb. The narrator is Peter Noble and he mastered the range of voices and accents perfectly. I was impressed - and the audiobook might have lasted for 9 hours 41 minutes, but I was not best pleased when it ended!

If you prefer Paris to the Dordogne you might appreciate David Barrie's Franck Guerin novels, starting with Wasp-Waisted.


Martin Walker's Commissar Bruno Courreges Mysteries in Chronological Order

Booklists.jpg The Dying Season: A Bruno Courreges Investigation by Martin Walker is in the Top Ten Crime Novels of 2015.
Buy The Dying Season: A Bruno Courreges Investigation by Martin Walker at Amazon You could get a free audio download of The Dying Season: A Bruno Courreges Investigation by Martin Walker with a 30-day Audible free trial at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy The Dying Season: A Bruno Courreges Investigation by Martin Walker at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Dying Season: A Bruno Courreges Investigation by Martin Walker at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy The Dying Season: A Bruno Courreges Investigation by Martin Walker at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Dying Season: A Bruno Courreges Investigation by Martin Walker at Amazon.com.


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