By Antonin Varenne
Winner of the Prix Quai du Polar, Antoin Varenne is a emerging megastar within the interesting new wave of French crime fiction. Hard-boiled Paris police lieutenant Richard Guerin idea he knew the depths of human tragedy and perversion in the course of his years investigating suicide cases--not to say his formative years, raised by way of his prostitute mom (who left him not anything yet her foul-mouthed parrot).
but if a slew of situations which are means too extraordinary to be trouble-free suicides prove on his table, Guerin starts to suspect that he's up opposed to a nihilistic evil past whatever he is encountered prior to.
First, there's Alan Musgrave, an American guy who bleeds himself to dying on degree in the course of a unwell S&M convey in an underground Paris nightclub. one other runs bare into site visitors with palms outstretched and is splattered to pulp through a heavy truck. yet one more hurls himself from a museum balcony to dying via impalement on a whale skeleton.
Guerin's corrupt police colleagues ridicule his selection to discover the connections among those frightening deaths. but he presses on, plunging into the seamy sadomasochistic underbelly of town of lighting that the majority by no means see.
unforeseen aid comes from a pal of Musgrave's, an eccentric and inventive wealthy American named John Nichols who has lately arrived in Paris toting a bow and arrows. The bloody path leads them to the higher reaches of either the Parisian police strength and the yank embassy, whereas Guerin starts off to suspect that the last word resolution may perhaps lie someplace in Nichols's past.
In Bed of Nails, Varenne does for Paris what James Ellroy did for classic l. a.: He expertly throws a vivid gentle on a modern city's hideous hidden face.
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Extra resources for Bed of Nails
Sweetie-pie! Sweetie-pie! ” with out conviction, Guérin advised him back to be quiet. He channel-hopped, utilizing the distant. whilst a few formulation One vehicles seemed racing around a circuit, Churchill begun up back, this time in a man’s voice Guérin didn't recognize: “Morons! Morons! ” And ended with a screech of female laughter. Guérin determined to stick with the racing autos and attempted to imagine what the hyperlink should be among a Nigerian drug-dealer within the Goutte d’Or neighbourhood and a formulation One racetrack. the traditional fowl, this time imitating his master’s voice, stared on the monitor and squawked: “Why-eee-eye? Why-eee-eye? ” From the courtyard got here one other voice. “Can’t you close up that bloody poultry up? ” nearly five. 00 a. m. Paris was once waking up. The hyperlink was once the semblance shared by way of junkies and the general public staring at a race. all of them imagine existence is a bit circuit going around and around, yet that should you carry on eating mammoth and ever-increasing amounts of gasoline, you will get without delay from it. Guérin considered Savane, of the drivers, of the galaxy of little dents within the wall of the flat, of the buyers and their consumers, and concluded that tonight were organised round the proposal of the wall, and of the rate at which one concept one was once going to hit it. at the display, a automobile left the tune, after colliding with one other and somersaulted a number of occasions in a cloud of airborne dirt and dust. Churchill, digging his claws into Guérin’s shoulder, gave a burst of cynical laughter, back imitating the voice of the unknown guy. different photographs now mingled with the race. His eyes half-closed, Lieutenant Guérin used to be seeing in one of the autos, plastered with ads for cigarettes, D. I. Y. shops and motor oil, a unadorned guy operating along with his palms up in a frenetic race. And he knew, now with out hesitation, that the fellow at the ring street was once additionally a component within the immense concept. As he dropped off to sleep, his fingers falling to the perimeters of the chair, Churchill, together with his clipped beak, lightly rubbed the head of this overfull head. four The van had begun overheating someplace round Limoges. John stopped at a roadside café, to drink a lager and devour a soapy-tasting ham sandwich, whereas he waited for the engine to chill down. He started out back as darkness fell, drove a way, then left the most highway, searching for a box to park for the evening. He opened the again of the van and rolled up in a blanket, letting his legs cling down outdoor. It took decades to drop off to sleep. through the trip, he were going again over the tale of his acquaintance with Alan Mustgrave. Twelve years. Alan’s absence, although it appeared unreal, was once revealing a presence whose weight he had no longer but measured. mendacity within the van, he had reached the top of the tale, the final time he had visible him. months prior, in mid-winter, within the tepee. As traditional, Alan had became up abruptly. the true shock was once that he had made it that a ways. Al hated the geographical region, any nation-state, simply because he had grown up in a single of the deadliest patches of it: the never-ending plains of Kansas.