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The Devil's Cave: Bruno, Chief of Police 5 Hardcover – 2 Aug 2012
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'A gripping read ... descriptions of the French countryside and food make you wish you were in Saint Denis, despite its crime rate' Destination France. (Destination France)
'An entertaining read - and not just for the Francophiles' Manchester Evening News. (Manchester Evening News)
'an excellent addition to a series that is maturing as richly as the wines and cheeses that grace its pages' Reviewing the Evidence. (Reviewing the Evidence)
'I wanted to put it down, if only to make it last a little bit longer, but resistance was futile' French Village Diaries. (French Village Diaries)
'Perfect reading for a hot summer's day as you easily slip into the slower pace of country life - and then feel the pangs of hunger as Bruno gets going in the kitchen' Connexion. (Connexion)
'Superb in its relentless sense of truth catching up with falsehood' We Love This Book. (We Love This Book)
'The irresistible Bruno ... leaping up mountains and plunging into caves as he prevents various ingenious crimes and plots from upsetting the traditional way of life in St Denis' Literary Review. (Literary Review)
'The setting in all the books is so vividly drawn that anyone who has visited the area on a caving holiday will feel instantly at home' Descent Magazine. (Descent Magazine)
'Walker is one of the few non-French writers writing about L'Hexagone's characters in English from a French perspective. Here he does it so well you feel as if you are reading an indigenous author's translated work' France Magazine. (France Magazine)
A body is found showing marks of Satanism. Bruno, chef de police must track down a murderer while quelling his town's superstitious fears in the fifth book in this internationally bestselling series --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product description
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For me there were too many loose ends and non-sequiturs. I can believe some implausible plot lines and happy coincidences, but there are just too many and it seems like it is written as a TV script where anything goes - think Montalbano or A Touch of Frost.
There are occasionally - more in earlier books - real insights into the secret history of France and Europe in the wartime and post-war periods. Martin Walker is too clever a writer not to know what he is doing and these book are real page turners but Dostoevsky they are not.
Without going into great plot detail, "The Devil's Cave" is largely focuses on the death of a beautiful woman found nude and floating down St. Denis' river in a punt attended by signs of a satanist orgy. The woman's local roots are discovered as Bruno leads an investigation into her death and connections to a prominent family with important ties to the national government are uncovered. There is a slam-bang close to this novel that takes place in an underground cave complex that the region is famous for. Along the way to the finish, there is plenty of time for Bruno to produce great meals, engage in vintage wine name-dropping, romance and bonding with a new dog.
It is Chief Bruno's personal life that makes this book--and its predecessors--such addictive reading (my opinion). And the ample time spent in "The Devil's Cave" on the man/dog relationship will probably make regular fans of the series raving fanatics. It's pretty irresistible.
This is a fine read albeit with a few moments of excess--over-the-top on the satanist stuff and maybe a little overwriting in the action-centered finale--but overall, very satisfying and getting us all lined up, salivating for the next Bruno book.
Walker paints a great picture of the life of Bruno, police chief, gentleman, former soldier, two women on the go, connections to secret police, all amidst charming community life, friends and foes.
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