A series of interlocking crimes send St-Cyr and Kohler into the
heart of the Parisian underworld It is February 1943, and Paris is
under a blackout. For three years, the French inspector Jean-Louis
St-Cyr and Hermann Kohler of the Gestapo have investigated the
mundane violence of Nazi-occupied France, but never have they
experienced such a cold, sleeting winter. While investigating a
burgled stamp collector's shop, they get a call telling them that
they went to the wrong crime scene-they were supposed to have been
sent to comfort a woman who was attacked for running around with
Nazis and their collaborators. The rapist's timing was perfect-so
perfect that the two detectives wonder if they were deliberately
sent to the wrong place. They next follow up on a tip about a body
dumped in a cellar. The young man they find has been stripped
naked, savagely murdered, and left to rot. Was he a homosexual? A
pimp? A Resistance fighter? Theft, murder, rape-conspiracy. It is
just another night in Paris under the Nazis. "Janes hooks you
quickly. You are drawn to the sympathetic characters of the two
detectives. They are not the brutal policemen associated with
wartime, but decent men in a world of brutality." -Spectator "One
of the most unusual crime-fighting duos in detective fiction."
-Mystery Review "Janes has effectively recreated a period of French
history that is usually unacknowledged or swept under the rug.
Original and gripping." -The Drood Review of Mystery J. Robert
Janes (b. 1935) is a mystery author best known for writing
historical thrillers. Born in Toronto, he holds degrees in mining
and geology, and worked as an engineer, university professor, and
textbook author started he began writing fiction. He began his
career as a novelist by writing young adult books, starting with
The Odd-Lot Boys and the Tree-Fort War (1976). He wrote his last
young adult novel, Murder in the Market, in 1985, by which time he
had begun writing for adults, starting with the four-novel Richard
Hagen series. In 1992, Janes published Mayhem, the first in the
long-running St-Cyr and Kohler series, for which he is best known.
These police procedurals set in Nazi-occupied France have been
praised for the author's attention to historical detail, as well as
their swift-moving plots. The thirteenth in the series, Bellringer,
was published in 2012.
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