A Man’s Head by Georges Simenon
A new translation of Georges Simenon’s atmospheric novel set in the bustling streets of Paris, book nine in the new Penguin Maigret series.
Slowly the Czech was becoming animated, but in a muted way, so typical of the man. Maigret now noticed his hands, which were long, surprisingly white and dotted with freckles. They seemed to reach out and take part in the conversation. ‘Let’s be clear that it’s not your professionalism which I question. If you understand nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing, it’s because from the very start you’ve been working with facts which had been falsified.’
Maigret sets out to prove the innocence of a man condemned to death for a brutal murder. As his audacious plan to uncover the truth unfolds, he encounters rich American expatriates, some truly dangerous characters and their hidden motives.
This is definitely my favourite Maigret book so far although I still have a lot to read yet. I really was hooked with this book and could not put it down, I just found the story fascinating.
The book begins with an unusual scene but we soon realise that this is Maigret trying to prove the innocence of a man because Maigret’s gut is telling him things are not right. As Maigret starts to reinvestigate he comes upon the mysterious Czech. The Czech is a strange character who seems quite contrary. Other people would be mystified by the Czech’s actions and behaviour but Maigret clearly isn’t.
As the story goes on Maigret starts to work it all out and starts to unweave the web that has been spun around the double murder he is investigating. I really liked the character Janvier who Maigret puts on the job of tailing the Czech. Janvier is young and inexperienced but he is dedicated to the job and lives to prove himself to Maigret.
I love the character of Maigret he is such a formidable character and very eccentric. His love of warmth is hilarious but yet again I feel sorry for his wife who he never goes home to when he is on a case. The poor woman must have the patience of a saint.
I really enjoyed this book and could have easily read it in one sitting but sadly work had to come first. I give this book a big 5 out of 5 Dragons.
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About the author
Georges Simenon (1903-1989) was a Belgian writer who published nearly 500 novels and many short stories. Simenon is best known as the creator of the Maigret stories.