My Friend Maigret

My Friend Maigret

3.63 (609 ratings by Goodreads)
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Maigret is going about his work in rainy Paris, followed around by Inspector Pyke who has come from Scotland Yard to study the famous French detective's methods. Routine is disturbed when Maigret receives a telephone call from the island of Porquerolles off the Mediterranean coast. A small-time crook has been murdered, the night after he had fervently declared his friendship with Maigret in front of a large group of the island's inhabitants. Maigret and Inspector Pyke leave the greyness of Paris for the sunshine of Porquerolles where Simenon creates a wonderfully evocative atmosphere of the square and cafe, the brilliant sea, the humidity in the air and the life and individuality of each of the inhabitants on the small more

Product details

  • Paperback | 176 pages
  • 141 x 197 x 12mm | 140g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • 0141187328
  • 9780141187327

Review Text

Maigret is fed up. It is raining in Paris and his footsteps are being dogged by Inspector Pyke, an impassive and self-effacing but nevertheless irritating visitor from Scotland Yard, in Paris specifically to study Maigret's 'methods'. Inspector Pyke is beginning to get on Maigret's nerves, and there is in fact little for him to study - work is tediously routine. Things perk up when a phone call from Porquerolles, a small island in the Mediterranean, reports the murder of one Marcel-Joseph-Etienne Pacaud, a seaman originally from Le Havre, who had a string of convictions and bizarrely claimed to be a friend of Maigret. The surprised Maigret suddenly remembers that he did once do Pacaud a favour; he was instrumental in getting Pacaud's tubercular girlfriend Ginette into a sanatorium for treatment. Now, the shocked Maigret is told, he is being held responsible for Pacaud's murder. It's still raining in Paris, and the immaculate Inspector Pyke is still unintentionally exasperating. Anything would be better than the status quo, so off Maigret goes, Inspector Pyke in his wake, to investigate the situation. What he finds is a typical fantasy island inhabited not only by locals but rich expats, artists, the yachting set, layabouts and idlers of every kind, all of whom have something to say, but nothing very helpful. Inspector Pyke settles in with amazing ease - mingling with the islanders, swimming a great deal, acquiring a tan, but also discreetly asking questions. Simenon paints a wonderfully vivid portrait of the island and its inhabitants as well as the Englishman in their midst, who quietly contributes much more to the unveiling of the dark secrets that lie behind the laid-back life-style than either Maigret or the reader expects. The novels are short, and succinct, but Simenon manages to pack into around 150 pages more than many novelists do in three times as many, without ever making the reader feel short-changed. (Kirkus UK)show more

Author information

Georges Simenon was born at Liege in Belgium in 1903. He published over 160 books and his work has been admired by almost all the leading French and English critics. His books have been translated into more than 20 languages and more than 40 have been more

Rating details

609 ratings
3.63 out of 5 stars
5 17% (106)
4 37% (228)
3 37% (226)
2 7% (42)
1 1% (7)
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