at Crooked Cat Publishing Ltd
Sacrificing his job in investigation following an incident in Paris, Jacques Forêt has only a matter of weeks to solve a series of mysterious disappearances as a Gendarme in the rural French village of Messandrierre. But, as the number of missing persons rises, his difficult and hectoring boss puts obstacles in his way. Steely and determined, Jacques won’t give up and, when a new Investigating Magistrate is appointed, he becomes the go-to local policeman for all the work on the case. Will he find the perpetrators before his lover, Beth, becomes a victim? Messandrierre – the first in a new crime series featuring investigator, Jacques Forêt.
A wonderful preamble to a hearty series.
The plot moves at a rapid fire pace. I was surprised the culprits were revealed so early on yet it didn’t diminish the storyline at all. At first I thought the premature unveiling was a red herring, I quickly learned this was not the case. The story progresses subtely demonstrating the menacing intentions of predators. I also enjoyed the gentle romantic undertones between Jacques and Beth in combination with other plot threads, especially of Beth’s late husbands shenanigans and secrets.
Jacques is warm and charming, difficult not to find him appealing, enough mystique surrounds him spiking your curiosity. He loves his job although at a crossroads career wise. He appreciates the leisurely pace of village life but misses the intensity of policing a city such as Paris. He attempts to reignite the moody romantic flame with Beth since their interaction has tempered. Overall his essence is palpable. Beth isn’t as easy to like as Jacques. She’s tepid, self-absorbed, aloof. She seems hot and cold in both behavior and actions regarding Jacques. Tension is thick when Jacques questions Beth in the investigation. Enough is drawn between these two to pique my interest further, the future is up in the air in with this intriguing couple.
A hefty mystery, pleasant setting creating a quaint ambiance. Colorful characters with a mystery offering much more to come leaving the reader guessing at possibilities. Perfect ending causing great anticipation. Looking forward to the plethora of unanswered questions left lingering.
About Angela Wren
Having followed a career in Project and Business Change Management, I now work as an Actor and Director at a local theatre. I’ve been writing, in a serious way, for about 5 years. My work in project management has always involved drafting, so writing, in its various forms, has been a significant feature throughout my adult life. I particularly enjoy the challenge of plotting and planning different genres of work. My short stories vary between contemporary romance, memoir, mystery and historical. I also write comic flash-fiction and have drafted two one-act plays that have been recorded for local radio. The majority of my stories are set in France where I like to spend as much time as possible each year.
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