That said, in recent times I’ve also become a fan of the work by Stephen Clarke and in particular his “Merde” series of books. I understand by a recent e-mail that Stephen is himself halfway through the draft of the 5th book in this series following the travels and adventures of Englishman Paul West, who we first meet attempting to open an English Tea Room in Paris – begin the hilarity as he attempts to navigate his way through French bureaucracy, women and attitudes. The currently available four books are entitled:-
A Year in the Merde (2005)
Merde Actually (2006)
Merde Happens (2008)
Dial M for Merde (2009)
Check them out for more details – I’m not in the habit of giving out “spoilers.”
Coming In August,
The sixth book by Claude Izner (Claude Izner is the pen-name of two sisters, Liliane Korb and Laurence Lefevre. Both booksellers on the banks of the Seine, they are experts on nineteenth-century Paris.) In the fantastic Victor Legris murder mysteries series will be available entitled “Strangled in Paris”
Why would anyone strangle a humble seamstress with no known enemies? When newly-married bookseller Victor Legris is asked to solve the murder of Louise Fontaine in the abattoir district of La Villette, he is initially baffled by the case. But as the investigation progresses, Victor, along with his assistant and brother-in-law Joseph discovers that in belle-époque Paris young girls with no money or background are as ruthlessly preyed on as ever they were..
Coming In September
The fifth book in the brilliant Oscar Wilde Murder Mysteries series will be upon us entitled “Oscar Wilde and the Vatican Murders.”
In 1892 Arthur Conan Doyle, exhausted by his creation Sherlock Holmes, retires to the spa at Bad Homburg. But his rest cure does not go as planned. The first person he encounters is Oscar Wilde, and when the two friends make a series of macabre discoveries amongst the portmanteau of fan mail Conan Doyle has brought to answer - a severed finger, a lock of hair and finally an entire severed hand - the game is once more afoot.
The trail leads to Rome, to the very heart of the Eternal City, the Vatican itself. Pope Pius IX has just died. These are uncertain times. To uncover the mystery and why the creator of Sherlock Holmes has been summoned in this way, Oscar and Conan Doyle must penetrate the innermost circle of the Catholic Church - seven men who have a very great deal to lose.