The Devil's Cave: A Bruno Courrèges Investigation (Bruno Chief of Police 5) is the fifth book in the Bruno, Chief of Police series, by Martin Walker. It has been many, many years since I read a crime book (I think Sherlock Holmes when I was a teenager) but as this is set in sleepy southwest France the publishers thought I might enjoy it. They weren’t wrong and the old saying of ‘never judge a book by it’s cover’ certainly comes true here as I would have been sure to walk past the dark ominous looking front cover. I have certainly been missing out on a great series here as I really enjoyed it. Martin has a very readable writing style and his descriptions of French life are spot on.
Bruno Courrèges, Chief of Police in a small Dordogne town, is a bit of a ladies man (well he is French), but I can see the attraction. Any man who makes, uses and always has in his freezer, a supply of homemade stock is my kind of man. Added to this he has a veggie garden, ducks, chickens, a pantry full of home bottled produce and is able to whip up a tasty meal and I was all for packing my bags until I remembered he was only a character in a book.
When a female body is found on a boat, bearing the ghastly signs of a black magic ritual Bruno springs into action. The victim is unknown and nobody is coming forward. This is the last thing Bruno needs. As the story progressed, the plot twisted and turned and the mysteries deepened, jobs around the house and the family got ignored and I know my heart rate had risen by the end of the book. I wanted to put it down, if only to make it last a little bit longer, but resistance was futile. I gave up in the end and let Bruno lead me to my sun lounger!
I am now off to add to my Amazon wish list as I have to catch up on the first four books.
Thanks to Quercus books for introducing me to Martin’s work.