Martin Walker

The Dying Season

""...there is a frisson of excitement as you begin the first page..." "


Benoit Courreges, commonly known as Bruno, is Chief of Police in the small town of St Denis, in the Dordogne region of France. In the latest of this charmingly appealing series, Bruno is investigating a death which occurred at the ninetieth birthday celebrations of local war hero, Colonel Jean -Marc Desaix, known to everyone simply as the Patriarch. He has been a personal hero of Bruno's since childhood, when his flying feats caught the imagination of the young boy. So to attend the lavish celebrations was a great honour and the investigation to the subsequent death has to be handled with extreme care.

Bruno's investigation uncovers many secrets that have been well hidden. At the same time, local conflict between the hunters of the area and the conservationists becomes critical and Bruno has to use his tact and reputation to keep things on an even keel, although not always entirely successfully.

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Part of the delight of following a successful series such as that of Bruno is that when a new novel comes out there is a frisson of excitement as you begin the first page, knowing that you have hours of enjoyment ahead of you. This is how I feel about Martin Walker and his creation, Chief of Police Bruno. I have read many of the previous novels with great pleasure and this one does not disappoint. It has all the ingredients I like: plenty of action, clever and original plotting, an update on Bruno and his love life and above all a wonderful immersion in the south of France, its ways of life, its characters and the wonderful food. This is like Peter Mayle's 'A Year in Provence' – but with a huge dollop of dark crime. C'est magnifique!

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