Crimes of Winter by By Philippe Georget (A Review by Sharron McKenzie)
Inspector Gilles Sebag is not a happy man. He arrives at a murder scene still reeling from the discovery of his beloved wife’s infidelity, only to find a cheating wife shot dead by her husband. It looks like an open and shut case, hardly worthy of the detective’s talents – until he finds links between the murder and a spate of crimes committed by betrayed husbands. Depressed, and fighting a growing fondness for the bottle, Sebag’s famed intuition has deserted him. To find the underlying cause of these crimes, he must first face his own inner demons.
While ostensibly a crime novel, ‘Crimes of Winter’ delves deeply, and sympathetically, into the difficulties of rebuilding a relationship after infidelity. The detective must discover for himself whether he can overcome his feelings of jealousy and betrayal to stay with the woman he loves.
Unlike many fictional detectives, Sebag is no lone wolf – the investigation is realistically portrayed as a team effort. Although all his colleagues have their part to play in uncovering clues, I found the supporting characters somewhat one-dimensional – at times I struggled to tell one from another and found their casual sexism grating.
The action proceeds at a gentle pace, with the characters frequently pausing to enjoy some deliciously described French and Catalan cooking. The descriptions of the town of Perpignan and the customs of its inhabitants add delightful local color to the narrative. I found it an enjoyable light read, without the blood and gore often found in a crime novel.
Review by Sharron McKenzie