This novel takes place in St. Denis in the Dordogne in France and incorporates a wonderful rural life of friends, family and especially food. Horses and dogs, ducks, chickens and geese, especially geese, have their place as well. Bruno, chief of police is called on at the last moment to navigate for his friend, Annette in a cross-country auto race which brings visitors in the form of expensive cars and the foreigners who race them to their quiet village. Two of these foreigners are hot on the trail of an unbelievably valuable Bugatti race car which disappeared near the village during WWII. While Bruno goes about his daily routine of dealing with petty thieves, truant teenagers and exercising his horse, Hector and Bassett hound Balzac, he comes across clues to the automobile’s fate. Meanwhile a new love interest enters his life in the form of a young lady home from London to visit her parents who are feuding with their wealthy relative over property rights and whether the area will host luxury apartments or stay the rural countryside they prefer. Bruno’s old flame Isabelle returns with evidence that links the race drivers to international money laundering and terrorist support.
A fun and well written novel, with so many elements that I enjoy: gardening, cooking, farm animals, horses and dogs, and mystery as well. I plan on reading other novels in the Bruno, Chief of Police series soon.