Fatal Pursuit by Martin Walker: A review

Let's face it, the mysteries in these Bruno, Chief of Police, "mysteries" are strictly secondary. The books are really a travelog of the Dordogne section of France, all about the laid-back country lifestyle and especially the food. 

After all, this Chief of Police is a gourmet cook who delights in preparing food for his friends and neighbors using the vegetables from his garden, fungi from the woods, and the products of the animals, mainly chickens and geese, that he and his neighbors raise. And of course the wine! Ah, the wine, at least two different kinds served at every meal and always at the ready to be served for any occasion. If Martin Walker is to be believed, the champagne flows freely in the little Dordogne community of St. Denis.

Food and wine and friends as always play big parts in the plot of Fatal Pursuit, but the main action is a car rally race. The race and a classic car parade are the main events of St. Denis' annual fête. The cars have attracted a large number of tourists to the area and the race has attracted super-rich car fanciers with big egos and vintage cars. It has also brought attention to the tale of a famous car, a Bugatti Type 57C, that disappeared in France during World War II. Supposedly one of the most beautiful cars ever made, it was one of only four that were produced and if it could be found and restored, it would be worth millions. It's enough to drive some of those seeking it over the edge with greed.

But back to the race. At the last minute, Bruno is dragooned into being the navigator for one of the drivers when her navigator reports he is ill and unable to do it. Thus we get to ride along on his - literally - hair-raising adventure.

Soon, though, Bruno's attention is drawn elsewhere when a local scholar turns up dead, maybe of natural causes, maybe not. Bruno has his suspicions and asks for an autopsy. The scholar had been researching some unknown topic, but all of his findings seem to have disappeared. Hm, I wonder if it could have had anything to do with classic cars...

This all gets very complicated when there appears to be a money laundering for terrorism operation going on and related to the exorbitantly expensive classic cars and possibly to the death of the scholar. Bruno's former lover, Isabelle, now working for the European Union's justice division, comes to town to be in charge of the terrorist-related investigation. Meantime, of course, Bruno has a new lover whom he's just met and who finds the body of the second suspicious death victim. In fact, there is no doubt about this one; he was murdered.

How will Bruno resolve it all, plus all the little community side issues that he's dealing with and still keep everyone happy and eager to attend his next gourmet meal? Never fear. He will do it while his Basset Hound Balzac charms everyone in sight.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars   


  1. I can just feel your love for this series in your review!

    1. I need some easy reads because I'm behind on my goal for the year, so I've decided to binge on some of my favorite series through the end of the month.

  2. I'd love to attend one of Bruno's gourmet dinners. :-) Breezy reading is what this series is about.

    1. Me, too! I think Bruno may be a better cook than policeman.


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