A Commissaire Adamsberg novel
France’s bestselling crime writer, and three-time winner of the CWA International Dagger, sends the quirky and original Commissaire Adamsberg far outside his jurisdication in a chilling tale of evil-doers who disappear after visitations from a band of ghostly horsemen
‘People will die,’ says the panic-stricken woman outside police headquarters.
She refuses to speak to anyone besides Commissaire Adamsberg. Her daughter has seen a vision: ghostly horsemen who target the most nefarious characters in Normandy. Since the middle ages there have been stories of murderers, rapists, those with serious crimes on their conscience, meeting a grisly end following a visitation by the riders.
Soon after the young woman’s vision a notoriously vicious and cruel man disappears. Although the case is far outside his jurisdiction, Adamsberg agrees to investigate the strange happenings in a village terrorised by wild rumours and ancient feuds.
“This latest outing for the offbeat Commissaire Adamsberg is [Vargas'] best”
“After decades in which crime fiction in French was dominated by the Belgian author Georges Simenon, it has an indisputable new star in Fred Vargas”
Joan Smith, Sunday Times
“Vargas depicts brilliantly a rural community riven with superstition, where class distinctions have existed for centuries”
“An early contender for outstanding crime novel of the year”
“A glorious mix of myth, quirky observation and gallic humour”
“Her novels about the kindly, quixotic Commissaire Adamsberg are unique, presenting us with a France that resembles Simenon’s in its concreteness but with a fantastical, even surreal, twist: werewolves, vampires and, in her latest novel, an army of ghosts on horseback… Her work is like a baked Camembert among the smorgasbord of chilly Scandinavian realism that dominates the foreign crime fiction market here, delicious comfort food for the sophisticated palate”
Jake Kerridge, Daily Telegraph
“There are, it seems, two types of people: those who have discovered the quirky bliss of Fred Vargas's novels and those who don't know a good thing when they see it on the shelf”
Independent on Sunday
“A celebration of love and camaraderie among the unlikeliest allies”