This is such a delightful book!! Bruno is the Chief of Police in a French market town. His usual police activities include thwarting the food inspectors trying to implement the EU regulations and marshalling for the patriotic parades in the village square. When the head of a Algerian family is brutally murdered, Bruno must deal with the National Police, the gendarmes and a very political judge magistrate.
Racism is the obvious motive. Bruno doesn't believe this for a minute. When the village doctor's son is caught in a compromising position with some Nazis and a lot of various illegal drugs, he is thought to be the prime suspect. Bruno, however, just can not let go of a few loose ends. Bruno is eccentric, charming and good at his job.
This book is full of Gallic charm with a great mystery and even the nice twist at the end. The reader is pulled into the quaint village life and learns a lot about the Vichy government during WWII and the resulting terror and feuds. Some of the Promo material describes this book as a marriage of The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency and A Year in Provence. This is such an apt description. I loved this book and will look forward to the next in the series
Learn more at Chapters/Indigo
First Line: "On a bright May morning, so early that the last of the mist was still lingering low over the great bend in the river, a white van drew to a halt on the ridge over the small French town."