In this riveting sequel to Martin Walker’s internationally acclaimed novel Bruno, Chief of Police,
some of France’s great pleasures—wine, passion and intrigue—converge in
a dark chain of events that threaten the peaceful village of
Benoît (Bruno) Courrèges—devoted friend, cuisinier extraordinaire and the town’s only
municipal policeman—rushes to the scene when a research station for
genetically modified crops is burned down outside Saint-Denis. Bruno
immediately suspects a group of fervent environmentalists who live
nearby, but the fire is only the first in a string of mysteries
centering on the region’s fertile soil.
Then a bevy of
winemakers descends on Saint-Denis, competing for its land and spurring
resentment among the villagers. Romances blossom. Hearts are broken.
Some of the sensual pleasures of the town—a dinner of a truffle omelette
and grilled bécasses, a community grape-crushing—provide an
opportunity for both warm friendship and bitter hostilities to form. The
town’s rivals—Max, an environmentalist who hopes to make organic wine;
Jacqueline, a flirtatious, newly arrivedQuébécoise; and
Fernando, the heir to an American wine fortune—act increasingly
erratically. Events grow ever darker, culminating in two suspicious
deaths, and Bruno finds that the problems of the present are never far
from those of the past.
A splendid mystery—and a delectable serving of the pleasures of France.
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