Inspector Evariste Pel--still the self-deprecating, intuitive martinet, but softening under the influence of widow Genevieve--stars in another solid French police-procedural, with major mayhem again disturbing the Burgundy countryside. This time, as usual, there's a double-focus for Pel and his squad: the murder of 13-year-old boy Charles Crâ€šbert coincides with a terrorist confrontation that leaves three policemen dead and uncovers a plot on the life of the President (due to visit the area in three weeks). Much painstaking sleuthing unmasks the boy's murderer--and leads eventually to a terrorist hideout, where a deftly chronicled siege ends with the assassins made powerless, their elaborate plot in shreds. Even better, in the process, Pel finally finds a way to arrange for the public embarrassment of nationally known TV newsman Robert Dâ€šmon, smooth-talking critic of police and their methods--after which the Inspector returns to his clumsy courtship of the patient widow. Straightforwardly satisfying.