Jean-Francois Parot

The Châtelet Apprentice

""I eagerly await the next instalment." "


In 1761, in pre-revolutionary France, Nicholas Le Floch travels from Brittany to Paris to become a police recruit. Although initially disorientated at being plunged into the carnival atmosphere of the capital, under the guidance of his mentor, Monsieur de Sartine, Nicholas sets about his training. He resides at the house of Guillaume Lardin, a police inspector who shortly afterwards disappears, with his wife, her lover and close friends implicated in the disappearance. Nicholas is given the task of investigating the mystery with the strict instructions to report only to Monsieur de Sartine direct.

His investigations which the king is taking a close interest in, put his life, and those around him in danger as he attempts to unravel the intrigue surrounding the case.

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This is an excellent mystery that will be enjoyed by all those who love period detective stories enmeshed in intrigue and deception. The character of Nicholas Le Floch has all the elements of a classic detective, brave, handsome but vulnerable especially when it comes to dealing with women. The author has clearly done a huge amount of research on the period. Descriptions abound of food that they eat, the means of procuring a suitable wardrobe and the method by which Parisians must cross the city. Paris is vividly brought to life including the stench of the meat quarter, the squalor of certain fauborgs as well as the splendour of the lives of those who are at the periphery of the French court. French detective fiction is having a renaissance in Britain at the moment and rightly so based on this book. The blurb promises this to be the first in a series of novels featuring Nicholas Le Floch and I eagerly await the next instalment.

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