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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Plus que ca change 4-
Good news for Bruno fans -- he's back, along with most of the usual supporting characters, not the least of which is the Perigord village of St. Denis. In "The Resistance Man", there are several plots underway, beginning with the death of an elderly WWII resistance fighter who dies holding banknotes from a legendary cache of millions taken by the Maquis from the Vichy...
Published 16 months ago by Blue in Washington

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars What has happened to Bruno?
I hope the series returns to the values that made it so special. In the other books in the series, Bruno's method of policing gives great importance to his knowledge and compassion for the people of Saint Denis. He is very protective of his beloved town and the good people who live there. He avoids unnecessary violence and bloodshed, and is careful not to offend, harm...
Published 5 months ago by B.R.


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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Plus que ca change 4-, August 5, 2013
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This review is from: Resistance Man (Paperback)
Good news for Bruno fans -- he's back, along with most of the usual supporting characters, not the least of which is the Perigord village of St. Denis. In "The Resistance Man", there are several plots underway, beginning with the death of an elderly WWII resistance fighter who dies holding banknotes from a legendary cache of millions taken by the Maquis from the Vichy Government as the war turned against the Axis powers. A spate of house burglaries also becomes a full time problem for Chief Bruno as they involve an important retired British secret service agent who appears to be giving the French Government political jitters. A brutal death in the midst of all of the former introduces the Chief to the local gay community and inserts some commentary of how the French feel (variously) on the standing of that community in the nation's social structure. Add the familiar cast of Bruno's girl friends, new dog, running buddies and local cuisine and you've got the general substance of this latest installment in this pleasant series.

Overall, I enjoyed the book well enough. The French might call it genial and that's a good way to describe the whole series. If there are flaws with "Resistance" it's probably that it bites off too much to process in its 300-odd pages. Author Walker has loaded this episode with an ungainly number of new characters and subplots. One major theme turns out to be a complete red herring OR maybe the track to a future novel. Hard to tell because the subject was not resolved in this book. Another problem for me was the handling of the gay characters; while Bruno takes a tolerant view on the subject, the book nevertheless paints pretty much all of this collective as losers (in several contexts). And there was no mention of the national debate in France on gay marriage.

So, good read--maybe less finished, more loose ends than would be desirable.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An irresistible "Resistance Man" case for Bruno, and 6th in a series that just keeps getting better and better., November 13, 2013
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This review is from: Resistance Man (Paperback)
This is the sixth of Martin Walker's "Bruno" novels and, like its predecessors, a great read--well written, cleverly plotted and hugely addictive. While I think it's always a good idea to read series novels--especially mystery series novels--in chronological order, I think these tend to stand up better than most others as stand-alones.

So, first, a bit of back story for newbies: Benoit Courreges, known to all as Bruno, grew up in an orphanage, fought in Bosnia, found then lost his true love to that war, then went on to become the one-man police force of St. Denis, a small town in the Dordogne region of France that rightfully adores him and considers him "family." He's also a culinary whiz and oenophile. At the beginning of this series he meets and finds love again with Isabelle, a smart and ambitious French detective who loves him back. But, unfortunately, she's as allergic to small town life as he is to big cities and as uninterested in having children as he is deeply in need of them. No way that relationship is ever gonna have a happily ever after, yet her job keeps sending her back to St. Denis and Bruno. But that may be about to end.

So, on to book 6, which begins with the death of one of the town's few remaining WWII Resistance veterans, who's found clutching a 1940s Vichy banknote in his hands, which may be connected to a famous unsolved long-ago train robbery. On the same day comes reports of a rash of burglaries of furniture, paintings and other valuable collectibles from several houses owned by wealthy foreigners who spend their summers in this part of France. Then comes word of an Englishman found murdered in a nearby gite (a cheaply restored farmhouse turned holiday rental). Are any or all of these things connected? And if so, how? And why? And by whom?

The Bruno series, in order, as of July 2014: "Bruno, Chief of Police," "Dark Vineyard," "Black Diamond." "The Crowded Grave," "The Devil's Cave," "The Resistance Man" and "Children of War."

Sidenote: If you go to Walker's Bruno web site, you can watch a half-hour book tour chat by the author at Washington's Politics and Prose bookstore, where he tells anecdotes and behind-the-stories stories about the series, himself, the cop who inspired the character of Bruno and some of the real life people and history and incidents that would find their way into these books. [...]
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This entire series is an armchair traveling sleuth's delight, February 27, 2014
This review is from: The Resistance Man: A Bruno, Chief of Police novel (Hardcover)
Whenever I learn that Martin Walker has written a new Bruno novel, I can't wait to get my hands on it. Each one is rich in character, rich in culture and customs, and permeated with the most delightful sense of place. The mysteries are intriguing and often tie into the history of the Perigord region of southwestern France.

Although the inhabitants of St. Denis aren't angels, the village can seem too idyllic at times, but I don't mind a bit. As a former journalist, Walker has an eye for the telling detail, and once you've read a Bruno novel, you have a good grasp of the land, its people, its customs, and-- mouthwateringly so-- its food and wine. St. Denis is a French village as it should be, and I enjoy reading about it.

It's easy to become hooked on Bruno's life in general: how he knows everyone who lives there, how firmly entrenched he is in the life of the village through his job and his participation in sports, celebrations, and good fellowship. Bruno is the perfect candidate for marriage, but Miss Right continually eludes him. In fact, he has some upsetting news on that front in The Resistance Man, and it's interesting to see how he comes to terms with it. If you're a crime fiction fan who yearns for plenty of forensics, you'll have to find that elsewhere; these books are all about how Bruno can solve crime through observing and knowing people. Yes, he has a gun, but he seldom ever carries it, let alone uses it.

Each one of the subplots-- from the train robbery to the burgled houses to the murdered antiques dealer to the nuclear weapons program-- is interesting in its own right, but I loved seeing how Walker has Bruno tie them together.

Martin Walker's Bruno Chief of Police series is an armchair traveling sleuth's delight. The Resistance Man can easily be read as a standalone, but why deny yourself? Curl up with Bruno and a nice glass of wine and prepare to be transported to a wonderful village in France.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent novel about history, secrets & the charming Perigord region of France, February 26, 2014
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This review is from: The Resistance Man: A Bruno, Chief of Police novel (Hardcover)
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I've been enjoying this charming series of mystery novels set in the Perigord region of France, featuring Bruno, the chief of police of the small town of St-Denis. Bruno's a veteran of the conflict in Kosovo, a peace-loving soul who deeply loves his countrymen and the quiet life he leads in rural France. As the book begins, an old man dies. He dies of natural causes, but he's a former Resistance fighter and a curious banknote is found with him. This leads Bruno to a tricky case involving burglaries, murder, a hostage situation and more. The plot is complex but not unbelievable; the characters are delightful and nuanced; the action is well-paced and exciting. And the setting is as important to the story as the characters or plot.

If you haven't discovered this excellent mystery series, do yourself a favor and start it.You'll be sipping a crisp Bergerac wine and nibbling on truffles before you know it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars French Detective Par Excellence, October 7, 2013
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Great read, loved the setting, the food references and characters all combined with a good plot and a light touch of romance. Look forward to following this detective in his next adventure.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another fine and well-written story, September 3, 2013
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This review is from: The Resistance Man (Hardcover)
Each subsequent Martin Walker "Bruno" series book gets better and better. This one had multiple and well thought out sub plots. Enjoyable, as always. Having been born and raised in France, I get a big kick out of reading Mr. Walker's works.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars What has happened to Bruno?, July 11, 2014
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I hope the series returns to the values that made it so special. In the other books in the series, Bruno's method of policing gives great importance to his knowledge and compassion for the people of Saint Denis. He is very protective of his beloved town and the good people who live there. He avoids unnecessary violence and bloodshed, and is careful not to offend, harm or embarrass anyone unless he cannot avoid it. However, in this book, he seems to have lost his mind. The author has Bruno putting little puppy Balzac at risk, allowing Pamela to accompany him on a dangerous mission against his better judgment, where she gets seriously hurt. Not only that, until he finds out Isabelle, who has made it more than clear that she prefers her career over him, has betrayed his love by aborting his child, he seriously considers another dalliance with her, thereby being unfaithful to Pamela. Other things that are just wrong with this story: the mayor, Bruno's beloved mentor, loses his wife to cancer and has a date almost the same day--isn't that just a little cold? This is not worthy of the mayor that we have come to know. Also, Bruno has become a super-man. He wakes and exercises his horse and takes care of Balzac, spends the day fighting crime, takes care of the animals again, and then showers, dresses, and prepares a dinner party for friends, cooking with vegetables from his garden, truffles he has cultivated and dug, and ham he has aged, after which he spends the night with Pamela. I love the Bruno I used to know, abundantly blessed with common sense and someone you can rely upon to do the right thing. To me, that is his strength and the strength of the series. I hope he returns in the next book, because I was really loving this series.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars French culture and manners via British eyes, August 20, 2013
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Walker is a brilliant writer-he engages you immediately through his superb characterization and description of place. And then comes the "story," a narrative burdened with history that holds your attention as it affects lives in the present, and changes the normal course of predictable events.
The writer's characterization of animals, his beloved dog and his horses, adds to the story, giving it a natural country setting.
Add the recipes of French dishes and wines listed are great, and really, what else do you need?
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars he just gets better, July 6, 2013
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Bill Starke (Canoelands, NSW, AU) - See all my reviews
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Once again Martin Walker does it , not only a great who done it but all so a gastomic tour of a section of provincel France .He has put areal and character in these books and interesting story lines .Thoughly recomend it Bill Starke Australia
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars THE DETECTIVE OF THE DORDOGNE, July 6, 2013
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I know he is not a detective but the headline wins for me.
All the Bruno books are great to read when you are in the area as they fill out what you are seeing and make you feel a part of the department rather than just an observer.
Bruno himself is gentle but strong, kindly but tough and he is a cook as well as a crime solver.
The mayor fills out the stories with his political experience. The reader learns some little-known history in a most engaging way.
All in all another pleasing book with Bruno as the anchor.
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The Resistance Man: A Bruno, Chief of Police novel
The Resistance Man: A Bruno, Chief of Police novel by Martin Walker (Hardcover - February 25, 2014)
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