His title is Quality Controller, but Benjamin's function at The Store is scapegoat for the rage of the customers. So sweet is his nature, so pathetic and eloquent his contrition, that most indignant victims withdraw their complaints. But there is also the matter of the bombs that keep exploding not far from where Benjamin is standing. Naturally, he becomes the prime suspect, even as he and his journalist girlfriend, Julie, have begun to unearth an even deeper mystery, a sinister and sordid conspiracy whose unraveling wilt expose yet one more seam in the dark heart behind the beguiling veneer of contemporary Paris.
Daniel Pennac's novels of life in the Belleville Arab quarter, which began with The Fairy Gunmother, are as funny as Damon Runyon's stories, as thrilling as Raymond Chandler's novels and as wild as the best of Carl Hiaasen. With The Scapegoat, Pennac has once again struck just the right balance.