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Maigret and the Killer (Helen and Kurt Wolff Books) Paperback – June 16, 2003

4.2 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews
Book 70 of 22 in the Inspector Maigret Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Adapted for audio by Frederick Spoerly???, this excellent full-cast recording of a Simenon trilogy offers crime drama of psychological depth. In the first story, Chief Inspector Maigret of the Paris police investigates the murder of a young man who is stabbed from behind on a street. It first appears his death is the result of his habit of tape-recording conversations, and four burglars are arrested. Whereupon, the real murderer writes to the newspapers. In "Maigret Sets a Trap" (Audio Reviews, LJ 10/1/93), five women have been stabbed to death as they walk along the streets of Paris. Maigret arranges for a female policewoman to act as a decoy. The killer refuses to confess, and Maigret effectively psychoanalyzes what led him to become a hater of women. In "Maigret's Christmas," the appearance of "Father Time" in a child's bedroom leads to a case of theft and murder that Maigret solves virtually from his armchair. Each case offers up middle-class criminals, along with some interesting insights into the character of Madame Maigret. Sound quality is excellent. Recommended for public libraries.?Jacqueline Seewald, Red Bank Reg. H.S., Little Silver, NJ
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"One of the great revolutionists of the detective story." -The New York Times Book Review

"Maigret...ranks with Holmes and Poirot in the pantheon of fictional detective immortals." -People

"Simenon is ... in a class by himself." -The New Yorker
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Product Details

  • Series: Helen and Kurt Wolff Books
  • Paperback: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Mariner Books (June 16, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0156028417
  • ISBN-13: 978-0156028417
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.4 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.1 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,675,375 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Roger Long on April 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
Simenon's Chief Inspector Maigret never fails to take me to Paris, to enfold me into the city's daily life and the problems of solving a crime. This is accomplished by an economy of language that somehow includes all the details necessary to create a lucid scene.

This novel begins on a rainy night when Maigret accompanies his doctor friend on an amergency call: a man has been stabbed on a nearby sidewalk. It is no ordinary victim. He is the young son of a wealthy perfume manufacturer. The victim's hobby is secretly taping conversations wherever he goes. It is a pastime that proved fatal--or did it?

Maigret's investigation takes him to cafes and brasseries, from the wealthy to the poor, and piece by piece he solves the crime. Or, perhaps, it should be said that Maigret lets the killer play out and solve the case on his own. In either case it is the journey, not the solution, that ntrigues. There are the sights, and sounds, and smells of Paris. As usual, Maigret chats with his wife, goes to movies, and pauses often to have a beer or wine and to reflect on what he has uncovered to date.

Any lover of crime fiction who has not yet discovered Georges Simenon should do so immediately. Like Arthur Conan Doyle, he is one of the best, not just of crime fiction but of fiction writing in general.
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Format: Audio Cassette
This is one of my very favorite Simenon novels; superbly paced and brilliant characterizations.
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Format: Paperback
his brain is squirming like a toad." Jim Morrison.

Inspector and Mrs. Maigret usually have a very pleasant evening when they have dinner at the flat of Dr. and Mrs. Pardon. They enjoy good food, good conversation and the company of old friends. However, on this rainy night in Paris their evening is ruined when one of Dr. Pardon's patients rushes in to tell them that a man has been brutally knifed and killed on the Boulevard just down the street. The victim, Antoine Batille, is the son of a wealthy perfume manager. Maigret, by dint of his arriving at the scene with his friend the Doctor, takes charge of the investigation. A loner, Antoine does not seem the sort to make enemies or to make anyone angry enough to get stabbed almost a dozen times. However, Batille did have a hobby unusual enough for Maigret to launch an investigation. Batille was in the habit of taking a portable tape-recorder (a new and unusual gadget when this story was written in 1969) and taping random conversations in bars and bistros across Paris. As the story continues we see Maigret following a lead provided by the tape recorder. It seems that an easy solution is at hand. But Maigret sees something that takes him on a path that seems contrary to the evidence. As the plot unfolds we see Maigret following two paths, leaving the reader to guess which path leads to a solution.

I enjoyed "Maigret and the Killer" for a couple of reasons. Maigret is aging. He has been on the force now for over thirty-five years (I think Simenon penned the first Maigret in 1933 or so.) He is eyeing retirement and longs for life in the country cottage he and his wife purchased a while back.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Maigret and wife enjoy their dinners with Mr. and Mrs. Pardon on the Boulevard Voltaire. But one of the congenial meals is interrupted by a neighbor who has stumbled across the body of a young man in the nearby Rue Popincourt. Maigret answers the call with his friend Dr. Pardon and the pleasant evening is over and a complicated murder case begins. Maigret's investigation leads to the discovery of another kind of crime and the interesting story of the life of the murdered man. The killer, of the book's title, eventually emerges as a thoughtful portrait of a person burdened with deep problems that have festered since childhood. And a senseless crime becomes understandable.

"Maigret and the Killer" is a fine short read that shows off author Georges Simenon's flair for creating characters with very human problems. It has the usual interesting references to Parisian places and life, circa 1969. Highly enjoyable.
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Format: Paperback
Maigret and the Killer is one of the last books in Georges Simenon’s series of Inspector Maigret mystery novels, being the 98th installment out of 103 appearances by the Parisian detective. It was originally published in 1969 under the French title of Maigret et la tueur. Despite the fact that it was written 38 years after its title character’s debut, Simenon apparently hasn’t run out of ideas, and Maigret hasn’t lost any steam. Out of the half dozen Maigret novels I’ve read so far, this may be the best one yet.

Maigret and his wife are dining at the home of friends, Dr and Mme Pardon, when their evening is interrupted by Pardon’s neighbor, an Italian grocer. He has witnessed a stabbing in the street outside and asks the doctor for medical assistance. Pardon and Maigret rush out in the pouring rain, but the victim is already dead. The murdered young man is found with a tape recorder around his neck. When his family is questioned, it is revealed that he had a passion for recording random voices in public places. Maigret suspects that he may have recorded an incriminating conversation and paid for it with his life.

The Maigret novels are consistently good, but I can’t say I’ve ever been truly blown away by one. The same holds true for this installment, but it did manage to grab my attention from page one and keep me hooked all the way through. Simenon avoids cliché potboiler conventions in favor of a more realistic detective procedural. You won’t find any shootouts, chase scenes, or gratuitous action sequences, but the mystery is sufficiently mysterious and intellectually challenging. This book doesn’t follow the typical genre template with a big shocking reveal at the end.
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