Treachery in Bordeaux

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Overview

In modern-day Bordeaux, there are few wine estates still within the city limits. The prestigious grand cru Moniales Haut-Brion is one of them. When some barrels turn, world-renowned winemaker turned gentleman detective Benjamin Cooker starts asking questions. Is it negligence or sabotage? Who would want to target this esteemed vintner? Cooker and his assistant Virgile Lanssien search the city and the vineyards for answers, giving readers and inside view of this famous wine region. The start of a 22-book ...

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Treachery in Bordeaux

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Overview

In modern-day Bordeaux, there are few wine estates still within the city limits. The prestigious grand cru Moniales Haut-Brion is one of them. When some barrels turn, world-renowned winemaker turned gentleman detective Benjamin Cooker starts asking questions. Is it negligence or sabotage? Who would want to target this esteemed vintner? Cooker and his assistant Virgile Lanssien search the city and the vineyards for answers, giving readers and inside view of this famous wine region. The start of a 22-book wine-plus-crime mystery series that delves into the underworld of a global luxury industry. The world of wine is no more respectable than the world of finance. There’s money, deceit, death, crime, inheritance, jealousy—all the ingredients needed to distill a fine detective series. The series is a hit on TV in France.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Praise:

“I love good mysteries. I love good wine. So imagine my joy at finding a great mystery about wine, and winemaking, and the whole culture of that fascinating world. And then I find it’s the first of a series. I can see myself enjoying many a bottle of wine while enjoying the adventures of Benjamin Cooker in this terrific new series.”
—William Martin, New York Times bestselling author of Back Bay and The Lincoln Letter

“Treachery in Bordeaux is a fine vintage forged by the pens of two very different varietals. It is best consumed slightly chilled, and never alone. You will be intrigued by its mystery, and surprised by its finish, and it will stay with you for a very long time.”
–Prize-winning, bestselling author Peter May

“An excellent translation. The author obviously knows Bordeaux extremely well, and he knows quite a bit about oenology. The book should be a hit with lovers of Bordeaux wine.”
–Tom Fiorina, The Vine Route

“A series you can read with great pleasure.”
–Rayonpolar

Reviews
ForeWord Reviews Winter Edition: "Unusually adept at description, the authors manage to paint everything...the journey through its pages is not to be rushed.”

Review of Treachery in Bordeaux from AustCrime: “It is the perfect book for people who might like a little treachery with their evening glass of Bordeaux, a little history and tradition with their Merlot.”

Rachel Cotterill Book Reviews on Treachery in Bordeaux: “An enjoyable, quick read with the potential for developing into a really unique series.”

French Village Diaries review: “It is a good read with some strong characters, it moves nicely and is easy to follow, even with quite a bit of technical wine speak.”

Review by Kate Eileen Shannon at Rantin’, Ravin’ and Reading: “…a wonderful translation… wonderful descriptions of the art, architecture, history and landscape of the Bordeaux region…The shoes are John Lobb, the cigars are Cuban, and the wine is ‘classic’. As is this book.”

Review at The Butler Did It: “This book combines a fairly simple mystery with the rich feel of the French winemaking industry.  The descriptions of the wine and the food are mouth-watering!”

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781939474261
  • Publisher: Le French Book
  • Publication date: 5/29/2014
  • Series: Winemaker Series , #1
  • Pages: 144
  • Sales rank: 1,081,686
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Authors:
Jean-Pierre Alaux is a magazine, radio and television journalist when he is not writing novels in southwestern France. He is a genuine wine and food lover, and won the Antonin Carême prize for his cookbook La Truffe sur le Soufflé, which he wrote with the chef Alexis Pélissou. He is the grandson of a winemaker and exhibits a real passion for wine and winemaking. For him, there is no greater common denominator than wine.

Coauthor of the Winemaker Detective series, Noël Balen lives in Paris, where he shares his time between writing, making records, and lecturing on music. He plays bass, is a music critic and has authored a number of books about musicians in addition to his novel and short-story writing.

Translator:
Anne Trager has lived in France for over a quarter of a century, working in translation, publishing and communications. In 2011, she woke up one morning and said, “I just can’t stand it anymore. There are way too many good books being written in France not reaching a broader audience.” That’s when she founded Le French Book to translate some of those books into English. The company’s motto is “If we love it, we translate it,” and Anne loves crime fiction, mysteries and detective novels—and wine.

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Read an Excerpt

Treachery in Bordeaux


By Jean-Pierre Alaux

Ingram Publisher Services

Copyright © 2014 Jean-Pierre Alaux
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-939474-02-5


The morning was cool and radiant. A west wind had swept the clouds far inland to the gentle hills beyond the city of Bordeaux. Benjamin Cooker gave two whistles, one short, the other drawn out, and Bacchus appeared from the high grass on the riverbank. He had that impertinent look that Irish setters get when you remind them that they are dogs. Cooker liked this clever and deceptively disciplined attitude. He would never roam his childhood landscapes with an animal that was too docile. The Médoc was still wild, despite its well-ordered garden veneer, and it would always be that way. In the distance, a few low wisps of fog were finishing their lazy dance along the Gironde Estuary. It was nearly 11 a.m. and time to go home.
         The Grangebelle’s graceful shape rose among the poplar trees. The building would have seemed bulky, were it not for the elegant roof, the lightly draped pergola, the delicate sparkling of the greenhouse and the old varnished vases set out in the vegetation with studied negligence. Elisabeth moved silently among the copper pots in the kitchen. She shivered slightly when her husband kissed her at the base of her neck. He poured himself a cup of Grand Yunnan tea with slow and precise movements. She knew he was tired. She was perfectly aware of his nights of poor sleep, the deleted pages, the files he relentlessly ordered and reordered, the doubts he had when he completed a tasting note, his concern for the smallest detail and the chronic worry that he would deliver his manuscript late and disappoint his publisher. Benjamin had worked in his office until 5 a.m., taking refuge in the green opaline halo of his old Empire-style lamp. Then he had slipped under the covers to join her, his body ice-cold and his breathing short.
        Who could have imagined that France’s most famous winemaker, the established authority who caused both grand cru estate owners and unknown young vintners to tremble was, in fact, a man tormented by the meaning of his words, the accuracy of his judgments and an impartiality that he brandished like a religious credo? When it came time to hand over a manuscript, his self-doubts assailed him—the man whom the entire profession thought of as entrenched in certainty and science, which was also a fine art. Benjamin Cooker knew that everyone, without exception, would be waiting for his book to arrive in the stores. They would be weighing his qualifiers and judging his worst and best choices. It was essential that the publication of his guide never blemish his reputation as a winemaker and very sought-after, even secret, advisor in the art of elaborating wines. He made it a point of honor, which he proved with his sometimes scathing criticism of wines he himself had crafted. To him, moral integrity stemmed more often than not from this astonishing faculty of uncompromising self-judgment, even when it was forced and terribly unfair. He sometimes thought it belonged to another century, a faraway time, when self-esteem and a certain sense of honor prevailed over the desire for recognition.
(Continues...)

Excerpted from Treachery in Bordeaux by Jean-Pierre Alaux. Copyright © 2014 Jean-Pierre Alaux. Excerpted by permission of Ingram Publisher Services.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 5 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 28, 2012

    Imagine a French Robert Parker turned into a detective and being

    Imagine a French Robert Parker turned into a detective and being sucked into a mystery involving famous great wines in the Bordeaux region in France. I love this very curious, meaning nosy here ;-), character who can't help himself from trying to solve a mystery. All while testing wines for his world famous guide and enjoying life in a very epicurean way. Reading about this book, it seems that more than 20 books were published in France in the same series. And more English translations are coming. Can't wait!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2013

    Not much treachery

    Pretty pedantic.....not even worth the minor attempts at character development. Not worth the space on your library shelf. Glad it was cheap

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 30, 2013

    Part one of a series about detective work in the French wine ind

    Part one of a series about detective work in the French wine industry. As a starter it was short and had a very simple plot however this did not spoil my enjoyment of the book and was obviously laying down the groundwork for other more in depth stories to follow. Benjamin Cooper and his sidekick Virgile are well introduced and although new colleagues have struck a mutual respect relationship.
    An impressive first story and impressive translation from French. Recommend you try it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 18, 2013

    Benjamin Cooker is one of France's most famous winemaker, he als

    Benjamin Cooker is one of France's most famous winemaker, he also has doubts about his notes as he writes them about his wine in the Medoc region.He also interviews and hires an assistant Virgile.
    His friend and neighbor calls for his help when it is discovered his wine casks have been contaminated. Benjamin has his assistant Virgile take samples to his lab. As the story progresses Benjamin looks for and finds old items connected to wines and purchases them. He also speaks to a medieval professor and learns some helpful things.
    Anyone who enjoys wine and mystery I would recommend this book to and anyone who wants a short enjoyable book this would be the one.
    Thanks Net Galley and Le French books

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 22, 2013

    Great writing is like a great wine. It finds those deserving of

    Great writing is like a great wine. It finds those deserving of it.” – page 94

    My favorite line from this book is also its last, for it holds the whole truth of the work.

    Mr. Alaux and Mr. Balen’s style of writing remind me of Charles Dickens in his work “David Copperfield”. Layers upon layers upon LAYERS in the scope of description. This book is total immersion at its best – all the senses are stimulated, even through just the written word. The depth of understanding, and the care the authors put into taking their reader deep into their passion for wine, writing, and French life was a gem to behold. You can tell these gentleman wrote a story for themselves, that they would enjoy, and therefore, it became something everyone else would as well, because so much enthusiasm went into it.

    Le French Book and Anne Trager did an amazing job in the translation, and the e-book version had the same integrity as the print, which was refreshing. I love their company’s motto: “If we love it, we translate it.” The written word is safe with champions such as these!

    The story-telling style caught me off-guard at first. I found it unusual to have scenes of rushing building action, and then the next chapter would be two of the characters enjoying a drink over dinner and discussing the resolution of the previous conflict. Then I took a step back and realized what truly made this such a prize to read – the full truth of “culture”. I am getting to read a French book, written by French authors, who originally wrote for a French audience. I get to step off my current island of what I know and am familiar with, and delve deeper into the seas of the written word. That was worth the read in and of itself, and then you have this great tale on top of it!

    Only 100 pages long, but that number is deceptive. At 40 pages in, we are still traipsing across the hills with Benjamin and his dog Bacchus, learning where we are, and who we are walking with. And yet, 60 pages later we have come to the resolution of the mystery in perfect form, with no detail left out, and many more added along the way. I am totally hooked. I can’t wait to read the next 19 translations – as they come – and recommend this to all my fellow readers who want a chance to truly see the world through someone else’s pen.

    I received a review copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley

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