Jan 12, 2016

Book of the Week- A Death in Brittany

First, I want to thank y'all for all the comments on last week's post.  It certainly wasn't written as a call for encouragement, but I received so much- makes a girl all inspired up in here.  So weekly blogging is on my to-do list for 2016.

Keeping that in mind, instead of doing big reading list posts, I'm going to do a more manageable weekly post. Or try to do one, ha!

I just finished "A Death in Brittany" by Jean-Luc Bannalec, a pseudonym for the author, who travels between Germany and France.  The book was a bestseller in Germany when it was published in 2012, and the translated version just made its way here.

Here's the blurb:

Commissaire Georges Dupin, a Parisian-born caffeine junkie recently relocated from the glamour of Paris to the remote (if picturesque) Breton coast, is not happy when he is dragged from his morning croissant and coffee to the scene of a curious murder. The local village of Pont-Aven-a sleepy community by the sea where everyone knows one other and nothing much seems to happen-is in shock. The legendary ninety-one-year-old hotelier Pierre-Louis Pennec, owner of the Central Hotel, has been found dead.
A picture-perfect seaside village which played host to Gaugin in the 19th century, Pont-Aven is at the height of its tourist season and is immediately thrown into uproar. Dupin and his team identify five principal suspects, including a rising political star, a longtime friend of the victim, and a wealthy art historian. An obstinate detective whose unconventional methods include good food, good wine, and taking in plenty of sea air, Dupin finds his case further complicated when ongoing incidents compound the mystery. As Dupin delves further into the lives of the victim and the suspects, he uncovers a web of secrecy and silence that belies the village's quaint image. A delectable read, Death in Brittany by Jean-Luc Bannalec transports readers to the French coast where you can practically smell the sea air and taste the perfectly cooked steak frites in an expertly crafted, page-turning mystery.

I loved this book- it helped to have my phone nearby so I could google specific places and dishes to have a better idea of what things looked like.  An excellent mystery involving art- two things I love.  Some of the reviewers on Amazon complained that the characters were bland.  I didn't have an issue with this- chalked a little up to translation, but most due to the fact that this is the first book.  I feel like we will get to know the protangonist, Dupin, in later books.

What better way to while away the frigid January temperatures than curling up with a good mystery and being transported to the Brittany coast?  And being immersed in France for the past week, I now feel very cultured and am craving mussels.   What more could a girl want?  Now just to pretend that my Chick-fil-a sandwich is entrecôte and frites, and my diet lemonade is chilled Sancerre.


  1. Interesting! If you are looking for another good reach try "Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons" by Lorna Landvik. A group of neighbors start a book club in the 60s and it follows their stories (and secrets) through the 90s. "The women of Freesia Court are convinced that there is nothing good coffee, delectable desserts, and a strong shoulder can’t fix. Laughter is the glue that holds them together—the foundation of a book group they call AHEB (Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons), an unofficial “club” that becomes much more. It becomes a lifeline. Holding on through forty eventful years, there’s Faith, a lonely mother of twins who harbors a terrible secret that has condemned her to living a lie; big, beautiful Audrey, the resident sex queen who knows that with good posture and an attitude you can get away with anything; Merit, the shy doctor’s wife with the face of an angel and the private hell of an abusive husband; Kari, a wise woman with a wonderful laugh who knows the greatest gifts appear after life’s fiercest storms; and finally, Slip, a tiny spitfire of a woman who isn’t afraid to look trouble straight in the eye.

    This stalwart group of friends depicts a special slice of American life, of stay-at-home days and new careers, of children and grandchildren, of bold beginnings and second chances, in which the power of forgiveness, understanding, and the perfectly timed giggle fit is the CPR that mends broken hearts and shattered dreams"

  2. If you liked this you MUST read the "Bruno Chief of Police" series- it is wonderful but it will make you hungry.

  3. I love a good mystery!

    Also see the Lorna Landvik recommendation above and concur!


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