THE MONTMARTRE MURDERS by Richard Grayson

THE MONTMARTRE MURDERS

By
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Case #4 for The SûretÉ's Inspector Gautier, with the atmospheric period focus now turning to bohemian Montmartre, circa 1900. The first victim: art dealer Victor Lerner, a greedy, petty exploiter of struggling artists who was also an anti-Semitic reactionary. So Gautier finds a whole slew of suspects, including: Lerner's political enemies; Suji, the Polynesian ex-mistress of the late painter Manoto, a Lerner exploitee; and well-born vagabond-artist ThÉophile Delange (another of Suji's lovers), who has fled, mysteriously, to St. Tropez. But, while Gautier investigates these leads--and reunites with his bohemian mistress Claudine along the way--a major new one soon arises: there is odd, fevered interest (from a Greek tycoon, from Delange's posh family) in some seemingly worthless paintings by the late Manoto. And after Suji is also murdered, Gautier closes in--as usual--on a very high-class Parisian culprit. All in all: somewhat less deftly plotted than previous Graysons, but sturdy--with the varied milieux gracefully, authoritatively sketched in. (Incidental warning: the publisher's brief, promotional copy manages to give away the secret motive that's otherwise revealed only in the final pages.)

Pub Date: May 5th, 1982
Publisher: St. Martin's