Mysteries set in the French Countryside
Food and Wine Mysteries…
Love wine? Love food? Love a peaceful, yet deadly, small village in France? Then pack your magnifying glass, corkscrew, and baguette and head off to your favorite traveling armchair for a series of Food and Wine Mysteries.
This series is by Martin Walker, who has crafted a delightful main character in the body of Inspector Bruno, (Benoit “Bruno” Courreges) – Chief of Police for the very small village of Saint-Denis, fictitiously set in the Perigord region of France. So small, in fact, that he is the one and only police person and often walks a fine line between friend and official with the diverse set of people that make up the village’s population.
Food, the slow rhythm of the country and wine all play co-starring roles, and descriptions of the Inspector preparing meals are delicious.
There are a number of books in this series now, and I encourage you to check them out. Bruno, Chief of Police, introduces the character and the charms of Saint-Denis, and the Périgord region of France (part of the Dordogne), all the while weaving a tight mystery.
Reading Between the Vines…Food and Wine Mysteries
The Dark Vineyard finds the Inspector amidst growing tensions between environmentalists trying to make organic wine, GMO controversies, and the heir to a big money traditional wine maker, with smaller subplots, and flirtations involving the villagers in between.
Black Diamond refers to Truffles, often called black diamonds because of the price they command. In this novel, low grade Chinese truffles are infiltrating the Dordogne’s famous, and lucrative, truffle trade. At the same time, there is a rash of attacks on Vietnamese and Asian businesses, are they connected?
Inspector Bruno is trying to un-knot this tightly woven mystery when one of his hunting partners, a highly regarded truffle connoisseur, is found murdered, and later identified as a former intelligence agent.
These are the first books in the series and more have followed. Martin Walker also has several short e-books that make for an enjoyable lunch break or two. A Market Tale takes place around the weekly village outdoor market and rather than mystery, love is in the air.
Vintage cars, a rally race, romance, murder…and food and wine. Fatal Pursuit is the perfect read for a long weekend. As usual it’s filled with colorful characters and scenic descriptions that will whisk you away from your everyday routine to somewhere decidedly more enchanting.
Whether you read the Inspector Bruno series, or listen to the audio on a road trip, these Food and Wine Mysteries are delightful from first bite to finishing sip
From the author, Martin Walker’s Bio:
Former foreign correspondent in USSR, USA, Europe and Africa for the Guardian (UK), author of histories of the Cold War and 20th century USA, and of studies of Gorbachev, Clinton, the extreme right etc.
Now I write mystery stories set in the Perigord region of rural France, home of truffles, foie gras, great cheeses and wonderful wines.