Bruno, Chief of Police, and the Perigord

I just spent the spring and summer reading Martin Walker's "Bruno, Chief of Police" books. It is a series of 6 mysteries, all set in the fictional town of St. Denis in France's Perigord region. By the time I finished the series, I felt like I knew everyone in town, knew the local traditions and specialties, and knew more about France's history and ways. Bruno is an endearing, down-to-earth sort of cop. When not solving crimes he teaches tennis to the town's kids, oversees the Saturday morning open air market, and loves to cook. The author spent 25 years as journalist at The Guardian and is a scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center. He now lives part-time in the Perigord. Sometimes the crimes being investigated by Bruno are a little bit dark and have implications far beyond his small town, but Bruno handles them using local knowledge and a supreme sense of fair play. The pace is sometimes leisurely, but this is part of what makes the books enjoyable summer reading. I've now learned enough about the Perigord to target it for a future trip. You can see more at: Anyway, I just wanted to share my latest discovery with my fellow Francophiles here on the message board. Anyone else into the Bruno series? Has anyone been to the Perigord and wish to share their impressions?

Posted by Rebecca
Nashville, TN, USA
1290 posts

Thank you, Thomas! Sounds like a wonderful series to finish out my summer reading! Going to Amazon to place an order now.

Posted by Kevin
near Ringwood, Hampshire, UK
521 posts

Anyway, I just wanted to share my latest discovery with my fellow Francophiles here on the message board. Anyone else into the Bruno series? I hadn't heard of it until I saw this post, but I'm certainly going to take a look. Presumably the first book in the series is 'Bruno, Chief of Police'. Would you recommend that I read them in the order they were published, or doesn't it matter?

Posted by Dale
Boston, MA, USA
224 posts

Love the Bruno series! Especially when he gets serious about preparing a meal.

Posted by Thomas
Vienna, Austria
517 posts

Yes, it is preferable to read them in order. "Bruno, Chief of Police" is the first one. I read #3 first, but then had to back track!

Posted by Dawn
Denver, CO
505 posts

Thanks Thomas, it sounds like a great series. I just put myself on the wait list at the library!

Posted by Kevin
near Ringwood, Hampshire, UK
521 posts

Ah, £1.90 on Kobo. Bought. Thank you Thomas.

Posted by stan
Kansas City
1207 posts

Thomas, just spent $60 downloading the series based on your well-written recommendation. I am wondering if there are similar detective series set in Germany/Austria/Switzerland? I have enjoyed the Italian detectives - Brunetti, Zen, Montalbano, and Marshall Guarrnacia. Also Aimee LeDuc in Paris, and a few Scandinavian series. Great way to get a different perspective on living there.

Posted by Pamela
New York City, NY, USA
4619 posts

I'd forgotten about this series. I loved it. I had to sell a lot of my books when I moved to NYC and so I lose track. So, sad. But now I'll search these out again. Thanks for the reminder. Pam

Posted by Richard
Los Angeles
998 posts

Not a lot of American tourists visit there but the French sure do. You see a lot of campers and motor homes during the summer and it is a very nature oriented destination. I said "amazing" about twenty times a day when I was there because there is so much to see and do. In one day I canoed down the river (which should be done leisurely like a day at the beach)visited pre-historic cave paintings and toured a Medieval castle. It is a good place to have a car. It is a little out of the way so if you are going you should set aside a decent amount of time to stay. Well worth it in my experience.

Posted by Lesley
Sidney, BC, Canada
439 posts

Sounds like a good series for my mystery book club! Thanks for passing this on.