When a musician’s new song hits a political nerve, he finds himself in the crosshairs of Spanish nationalists’ ire, and it’s up to Bruno to track down the extremists who seem ready to take deadly measures, in another delightful installment of the internationally acclaimed series featuring Bruno, Chief of Police.
Les Troubadours, a folk music group that Bruno has long supported, go viral with their new number, “Song for Catalonia,” when the Spanish government suddenly bans the song. The songwriter, Joel Martin, is a local enthusiast for the old Occitan language of Périgord and the medieval troubadours, and he sympathizes with the Catalan bid for independence. The success of his song provokes outrage among extreme Spanish nationalists. Then, in a stolen car found on a Périgord back road, police discover a distinctive bullet for a state-of-the-art sniper's rifle that can kill at three kilometers, and they fear that Joel might be the intended target.
The French and Spanish governments agree to mount a joint operation to stop the assailants, and Bruno is the local man on the spot who mobilizes his resources to track them down. While Bruno tries to keep the peace, his friend Florence reaches out for help. Her abusive ex-husband is about to be paroled from prison and she fears he will return to reclaim their children. Will Bruno and Florence be able to prevent this unwanted visit? Despite the pressures, there is always time for Bruno to savor les plaisirs of the Dordogne around the table with friends.
About the Author
MARTIN WALKER, after a long career of working in international journalism and for think tanks, now gardens, cooks, explores vineyards, writes, travels, and has never been busier. He divides his time between Washington, D.C., and the Dordogne.
“Smoothly integrated into Bruno’s investigation is information on a multitude of subjects, from medieval musical instruments to Ukrainian history, plus easy-to-follow recipes. . . . Good food, fascinating history, and a crackerjack mystery: who could ask for more?”—Publishers Weekly
“While a brilliantly conceived plot builds up to a climax that James Bond might envy, there is pleasure to be had in Martin Walker’s sensitive portrayal of a tight-knit community where friendship and mutual support count for more than expediency. Bruno is a hero for our troubled times.”—Barry Turner, Daily Mail (London)
“[Bruno] raises his own chickens, grows his own produce, and is as caring a cook as Robert B. Parker’s Spenser. . . . As usual, Walker concocts a satisfying dish featuring an intriguing lead character who moves through enviable settings and enjoys wonderful meals while tracking down criminals. . . . Suspense carries to the last in this extremely well-crafted mystery that can be enjoyed by both fans and readers who are new to the series.”—Connie Fletcher, Booklist (starred review)
“Everyone’s favorite French police chief Benoît Courrèges—aka Bruno, Chief of Police—faces a new threat. . . . All of Walker’s fan-favorite characters are present and accounted for, as well as all of Bruno’s treasured pastimes.”—Bruce Tierney, BookPage