Murder strikes close to home when Aimée Leduc (Murder in Palais Royal, 2009, etc.) finds her godfather charged with a crime passionelle.
“Something’s going on with Xavierre,” Commissaire Morbier tells his goddaughter. So while he’s off in Lyon on a case, Aimée and her partner René Friant crash the wedding rehearsal for Xavierre’s daughter at her upscale townhome in Passy. They find the mother of the bride frazzled, and no wonder. Within minutes, Xavierre is lying in the garden dead, leaving her daughter Irati hysterical in the arms of Robbé, her fiancé. Still worse, the police arrest Morbier, clapping him in a cell with Cheb DJ, a violent felon Morbier’s locked up many times. While DJ tries to win his release by beating information out of his cellmate, Aimée looks for clues near Place Victor Hugo, starting with the studio of Agustino, a painter who knew fellow Basque Xavierre from their school days in Bayonne. Irati too seems mixed up in the culture wars, as Aimée concludes when she finds a pamphlet from the separatist group Euskadi Action in her mail. Now that the results of the long-awaited Basque referendum are to be announced at the Marmottan Museum, will the nationalists give sabotage a rest? More murders, the kidnapping of a Spanish princess, and a frantic message from Agustino convince Aimée that Xavierre’s death has more to do with politics than passion.
The ideal mix of the personal, the political, the puzzling and the Parisian make Aimée’s latest a perfect pleasure.