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The outstanding fourth whodunit to be made available in the U.S. from Vargas (Wash This Blood Clean from My Hand) makes its easy to see why shes twice won the CWAs International Dagger Award. Paris Commissaire Jean-Baptiste Adamsberg, an endearing oddball sleuth in the tradition of John Dickson Carrs Henry Merrivale, is convinced that the two narcotics dealers recently found with slit throats werent the victims of business rivals, relying largely on his intuition and the unexplained presence of dirt under the dead mens fingernails. Adamsbergs dogged pursuit of small details leads him to a series of unusual mutilations of wild deer as well as to a serial killer who targets virgins and may be seeking the ingredients to an elixir for eternal life. While the final twist will be less than shocking to some readers, the immensely enjoyable prose, seasoned liberally with humor, should help the author gain the larger American audience she deserves.
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‘Stylish prose and strong characters’
-James Urquhart, Financial Times
‘Humorous and original eccentricity’
- The Herald
‘If you haven’t cottoned on to Vargas’s brilliant Adamsberg detective series, then you’re missing a treat’
-Stuart Kelly, Scotland on Sunday
‘This Night’s Foul Work goes beyond the suspense and plot twists expected of detective fiction as Vargas has created enthralling characters with very real emotions’
‘I absolutely loved the latest offering from Vargas. The story is bizarre but the humour and lightness in the way it's written make it seem convincing in this alternative Adamsberg universe’
‘The narrative pace and the conglomeration of oddities and details make for a high level of entertainment and mystery’
‘In theory, Fred Vargas’s novels ought not to work. The storylines are, almost always, wholly unbelievable. The characters, with few exceptions, are weird, exaggerated and unconvincing. And yet, when she assembles her unique, unreal mixture, what emerges is irresistibly gripping, powerfully written and quite often frightening’
-Marcel Berlins, The Times
Praise for Wash This Blood Clean from My Hand:
“A celebration of the grand French tradition of crime writing. . . . It’s finely crafted, elegantly written and very modernist.” - The Globe and Mail
“Plenty of tense entertainment.” - Toronto Star
“Wash This Blood Clean from My Hand establishes Vargas beyond doubt as a cool, clever, original and deeply humane crime writer.” - The Times Literary Supplement
From the Hardcover edition.