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Bruno, Chief of Police by Martin Walker

Bruno, Chief of Police (2008)

by Martin Walker

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Showing 1-5 of 35 (next | show all)
This is the first book in the Bruno Courreges crime series. Lots of lovely descriptions of the French countryside, food and wine. Bruno is far less damaged than many of the other detectives in the crime series I've read. A brutal murder, racial tension, and some WWII facts of which I was unaware.

December 2014 ( )
  NanaCC | Jul 26, 2015 |
Chief of police in a small and ancient town in France, Bruno is in love with his town and the people in it. He teaches tennis and rugby to the children and teens, he cooks for his friends and keeps an eye open for the villagers to save them from intrusive European laws about sanitation in their homemade cheeses and such. Most of all, he has found a home. Into this lovely place comes a grizzly murder of an elderly man. The town is on the verge of being ripped apart by forces far beyond its borders. Can Bruno restore peace and order?

This reminds me of what it might have been like if Andy Griffith of Mayberry ever had to face a horrible dark crime. The story is very current, highlighting the tensions in France and other countries over Muslim immigrants, racial hatreds and other issues. It touches these things in both the past and the present.

I love Bruno, partly because my mind latched onto the image of Rufus Sewell for him from the first description, and partly because his soul is that of Andy Griffith. He wants the best for people and he goes about getting that in the gentlest way possible. ( )
  MrsLee | Mar 31, 2015 |
I received this book from my LibraryThing Secret Santa, who I would like to acknowledge. Thank you so much for introducing me to a delightful new series set in France's beautiful Dordogne region (which is located east of Bordeaux). The book is a police procedural mystery set in the present day that introduces us to Bruno the Chief of Police in St. Denis located in Dordogne. Mr. Walker allows us to make the acquaintance of a wonderful new protagonist, and he also introduced me to the beautiful region in France where this series is set. Bruno is one of the most sincere detectives you'll ever read about, and his knowledge of his area and of his people is what helps him the most when trying to solve complex cases. In this book an elderly man is found murdered in his remote cottage, and he has had a swastika cut into his chest. Bruno joins forces with a couple of national police forces to try to solve what looks like a racist crime. As a result of Bruno's investigation, we are taken back to the second world war and to the very active French Resistance movement in the Dordogne region during the latter part of the war. Bruno delves deeper and deeper into history to try to figure out what happened to this apparently harmless old Algerian man and as he digs, he finds that the crime is much more complicated than it appears. What a great atmospheric mystery, and I want to pursue this series now that I've been introduced to it. ( )
1 vote Romonko | Feb 22, 2015 |
Synopsis: Bruno is a small town policeman. He likes knowing his neighbors, interacting with everyone in town and teaching tennis and rugby to the kids. A horrible murder occurs that threatens to tear the town apart along racial lines and to bring interference from politicos in Paris. Although Bruno is more or less excluded from the investigation, his local knowledge uncovers evidence that exposes a dark history of some of the town's inhabitants.
Review: The writing reminds me of that of Donna Leon. The descriptions of the area enhance the atmosphere of the story and put characters' actions in perspective. This is a very well written novel and fun to read. ( )
  DrLed | Jan 31, 2015 |
This is the first novel to feature Bruno Courreges, Chief of Police in St Denis, a lovely town in the Perigord region of France. At first it feels like cozy crime fiction. One wants to be in that town, exchanging pleasantries with the residents, buying a locally made cheese at the market, enjoying a glass of wine.
Bruno certainly enjoys his relatively peaceful life following a traumatic period as a soldier in the Balkan war. Most crime is relatively minor, and the community is quite cohesive. His only problem seems to lie in preventing locals from hijacking the efforts of EU food inspectors who are suspicious about centuries old methods of food production.
This changes when the murder of an elderly Arab takes place. He is the relative of a well established North African family who are friends of Bruno. It looks as if a hate crime has been committed by racists, but the case takes Bruno into very deep waters involving France's wartime past. His attraction to a visiting police officer is also something of a distraction.
The light surface of this novel with it's many engaging characters conceals a darker reality that gives depth to the story. By the end, Bruno himself, struggling to keep his community together, has a new understanding of the forces beneath it's seeming tranquillity. The book is all the better for this steely underpinning and I shall certainly seek out the other books in the series. ( )
1 vote Maura49 | Jun 20, 2014 |
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On a bright May morning, so early that the last of the mist was still lingering low over a bend in the Vezere River, a white van drew to a halt on the ridge that overlooked the small French town.
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Die Vergangenheit ist nie wirklich vergangen und vielleicht sogar heute noch tödlich.
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Meet Benoit Courreges, affectionately named Bruno, chief of police in a small village in the South of France where the rituals of the cafe still rule. A former soldier, Bruno has embraced the slow rhythms of country life. But the murder of an elderly North African who fought in the French army galvanizes his attention: the man had a swastika carved into his chest. When a visiting scholar helps untangle the dead man's past, Bruno's suspicions turn toward a motive more complex than hate, back to a tortured period of French history.… (more)

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