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The Turns of Time Mass Market Paperback – 1965

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback
  • Publisher: Collier (1965)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000WEWY9E
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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By W. B. Abbott on July 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This is the oldest, and in my opinion, the best of Audemars' books featuring his very 1960s Parisian detective. Monsieur Pinaud. But I've only read half of the total, perhaps there are more jewels like this. Here is the first paragraph:

"In the days when M. Pinaud's fame had grown even greater than the credulity of his listeners (which is not a statement to be lightly dismissed) he would stress the point, not once but many times, that the great detective must know something about everything."

This book is lovingly overwritten. Its main character is improbable even by the standards of Paris detectives invented by British writers. He is, in a distant way, related to Sellers' Inspector Clouseau. But Sellers' character is one you laugh at, while admiring his joie de vivre, perhaps. M. Pinaud is made of rather sterner stuff. a VERY serious man, a devoted husband, a large, capable man, wearing heavy shoes, armed with a pistol when one is needed. He has great patience, and the disposition of a philosopher. In short, the man who walks the mean streets but who himself is not mean. Who is as good as any man, better than many, honest and trustworthy. A person of the sort we would all live happier lives if there were more of. (I'm rehashing Chandler's "Simple Art of Murder" summary here, go look it up.) Pinaud is such a man. But also funny, as Nick and Nora Charles, or Chandler's fellow who talks they way Jane Austin writes...

Here he is speaking to the parents of the young hoodlum ('tude, motorcycle jacket, greasy hair) whom he works with, undercover, at a jewelery store. A pure Officer Krupke moment is available, but Audumars has higher ambitions for his story and his characters: (The mother is speaking)

"...he has grown into a stranger. We never see him.
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