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Paperback Mayhem: A Jean-Louis St-Cyr and Hermann Kohler Investigation Book

ISBN: 1569471584

ISBN13: 9781569471586

Mayhem: A Jean-Louis St-Cyr and Hermann Kohler Investigation

(Book #1 in the St. Cyr & Kohler Series)

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Very Good

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Book Overview

The first mystery in the St-Cyr/Kohler Investigations, set in December 1942 Occupied France. This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

2 ratings

Fascinating Premise, Execution Needs Work, Reads Like a Monet

J. Robert Janes is a Canadian author who has managed to create one of the more interesting detective duos among the many such pairs available in popular detective literature: a detective in the Paris police or sureté, Jean-Louis St. Cyr and a former Munich detective now in the Gestapo, Hermann Kolher. The two work as homicide detectives - after all even during the Occupation there were murders to be solved. Mayhem is the first book in the series. As a persistent consumer of detective fiction, perhaps the most instructive things I can offer is to reveal that I am presently reading my third book in the series (Kaleidoscope after Carousel (St-Cyr and Kohler)). Mayhem provides much of the back story you need to understand the protagonists and their developing relationship. St. Cyr is attempting to hold on to his dignity and his patriotism and is quite wary of Kohler. Fortunately, Kohler is a detective first and a Gestapo only several steps distant and not a Nazi at any step however far removed. The relationship between St. Cyr and Kohler is evolving; the relationships between them and their bosses and between those bosses and the competing German and French security forces is, to say the very least, complicated. Lines of authority are constantly blurred as theses forces vie for superiority. Among the goals of the leaders are the accumulation of loot and the exercise of brutal power. This complexity is a primary strength of Janes' writing that gives him a voice of vérité. The clarity of his writing also suffers from this penchant for complexity. His stories are difficult to follow and are perhaps best appreciated like a Monet painting for the total picture they reveal. I was thrilled to come across two more volumes (Sandman (St-Cyr and Kohler) and Mannequin (St-Cyr and Kohler)) in my favorite used bookstore, the Chequamegon Books in Washburn, Wisconsin. The Sandman attained recognition as a New York Times Notable Book of the Year in 1997. I do recommend reading Mayhem first as it provides much of the background for the protagonists.

A good book

As I am always on the lookout for historically-set novels, I stumbled across this book. The concept, setting and descriptions in this book are 5-star. The plot carries through much of the book but loses a little steam at the end. This is not Tom Clancy, but who wants to read that garbage anyway? I look forward to reading the remaining books in this series.
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