Chief Inspector Maigret, looking forward to dinner and TV after a hard day, finds waiting at home for him instead one Leonard Planchonan undersized, harelipped, introverted house-painter with an outsized problem. Planchon has been living for two years in a mÇnage Ö trois with lusty wife RenÇe and Roger Prou, who works for him. Planchon sleeps on a cot in the dining room, while the lovers share the bedroom and his seven-year-old daughter sleeps upstairs. Still in love with his wife,and afraid of losing his daughter, Planchon spends his spare time drinking in local bars, thinking of ways out of his dilemma, including the murder of his tormentors. Maigret soothes him, elicits his promise to keep in touch, and begins to keep an eye on the little house on Rue TholozÇ. Then Planchon disappears, and Maigret instigates an investigation with not-unexpected results. This brief novel, published in the US for the first time, is low-keyed, swift-moving, psychologically acute, and absorbing throughout.